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Cultural Appropriations and Identificatory Practices in Emily Carr's "Indian Stories"

Cultural Appropriations and Identificatory Practices in Emily Carr's "Indian Stories" 04-N3494 7/12/05 6:27 AM Page 59 Cultural Appropriations and Identificatory Practices in Emily Carr’s “Indian Stories” janice stewart The fact that Carr incorporates aboriginal peoples into her conception of who she is is not contestable.... This process, as it occurs in Carr, deserves to be highlighted and examined. In this paper, I aim to probe the complexities that underlie Emily Carr’s nar- rative practices, particularly those evidenced in her “Indian Stories” of Klee Wyck. I argue that these practices are markers of her identification with First Nations peoples, whose representations Carr both crafted and internalized by the practice of colonizing appropriation. How is one to read today the stories of a middle-aged, middle-class, white woman who imagined herself as a mem- ber of First Nations in the 1930s, and what issues of race and gender, for us and for Carr, are brought to bear on an understanding of that particular aspect of Carr’s imaginary space? Academic research concerning Emily Carr and her re- lationship with First Nations has tended, unproductively, to produce accounts of her appropriative acts that function discursively to entrench an analytic bi- nary, where Carr is either forgiven by contextualizing her actions in the cul- 3 http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies University of Nebraska Press

Cultural Appropriations and Identificatory Practices in Emily Carr's "Indian Stories"

Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies , Volume 26 (2) – Aug 23, 2005

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Publisher
University of Nebraska Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 Frontiers Editorial Collective.
ISSN
1536-0334

Abstract

04-N3494 7/12/05 6:27 AM Page 59 Cultural Appropriations and Identificatory Practices in Emily Carr’s “Indian Stories” janice stewart The fact that Carr incorporates aboriginal peoples into her conception of who she is is not contestable.... This process, as it occurs in Carr, deserves to be highlighted and examined. In this paper, I aim to probe the complexities that underlie Emily Carr’s nar- rative practices, particularly those evidenced in her “Indian Stories” of Klee Wyck. I argue that these practices are markers of her identification with First Nations peoples, whose representations Carr both crafted and internalized by the practice of colonizing appropriation. How is one to read today the stories of a middle-aged, middle-class, white woman who imagined herself as a mem- ber of First Nations in the 1930s, and what issues of race and gender, for us and for Carr, are brought to bear on an understanding of that particular aspect of Carr’s imaginary space? Academic research concerning Emily Carr and her re- lationship with First Nations has tended, unproductively, to produce accounts of her appropriative acts that function discursively to entrench an analytic bi- nary, where Carr is either forgiven by contextualizing her actions in the cul- 3

Journal

Frontiers: A Journal of Women StudiesUniversity of Nebraska Press

Published: Aug 23, 2005

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