Positionality: Place, Race, and Revolution in Indigenous Women’s Identity
Тезисы до: 01.08.2017
Даты: 12.04.18 — 15.04.18
Е-мейл Оргкомитета: firstname.lastname@example.org
This NeMLA panel will focus on the ways women have transformed space and place as central to their creation of a self-determined identity. In particular, it will focus on indigenous women’s relationship to geography and gender in the construction of self. Such an autonomous identity subverts the societal expectations and cultural geographies that have forced definitions of race and gender upon 19th- and 20th-century women. This panel would be an intersection of cultural geography, indigenous and ethnic studies, social justice issues, and eco/feminism.
Regionalism, and the other ways literature has shown us how landscape impacts identity, becomes a very deterministic element in 19th- and 20th-century women’s identity formation. East/ West, urban/rural, global/local; the usual geographic binaries become more illuminated in light of gender oppression. An American Indian woman living on the rez in the Pacific Northwest and a Mexican migrant working on the border have distinct and individual issues yet may share overlapping requirements for a more humane and personal life separate from the dominant discourse’s domestic ideology. This unique geographical determinism and the urge to revolt against or towards Place in order to re-create identity have yet to be fully explored by either environmental humanities or gender studies.
In this NeMLA panel, we will be exploring how ethnic and gender identity are co-created by environment. For instance, we might ask: How can we see Mexican women’s narratives, such Maria Amparo Ruiz de Burton’s novels about life on the border, the border of Mexico and the U.S. most obviously, as also about being on the border of gender roles, as determined by class? Further, what happens to high-born women when their family dynasties erode due to Western encroachment and cultural colonization? Or: how might readers understand a bold new geographically-specific indigenismo through Clorinda Matto de Turner’s novel of interracial romance in the isolation of the Peruvian mountains? From a more ethno-political perspective: how could we re-read first wave feminism through the eyes of Sarah Winnemucca’s Life Among the Piutes: Their Wrongs and Claims whose tribe already engaged gender equality?