New Perspectives on Native North America: Cultures, Histories, and Representations

New Perspectives on Native North America: Cultures, Histories, and Representations

New Perspectives on Native North America: Cultures, Histories, and Representations

New Perspectives on Native North America: Cultures, Histories, and Representations

Synopsis

In this volume some of the leading scholars working in Native North America explore contemporary perspectives on Native culture, history, and representation. Written in honor of the anthropologist Raymond D. Fogelson, the volume charts the currents of contemporary scholarship while offering an invigorating challenge to researchers in the field.

The essays employ a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches and range widely across time and space. The introduction and first section consider the origins and legacies of various strands of interpretation, while the second part examines the relationship among culture, power, and creativity. The third part focuses on the cultural construction and experience of history, and the volume closes with essays on identity, difference, and appropriation in several historical and cultural contexts. Aimed at a broad interdisciplinary audience, the volume offers an excellent overview of contemporary perspectives on Native peoples.

Excerpt

The essays in this volume were influenced and inspired by Raymond D.Fogelson, who has taught in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Chicago since 1965. The contributors, mainly Fogelson's students, include some of the leading anthropologists and ethnohistorians working on Native North America, and their essays exemplify the broad interests and interdisciplinary approach of their mentor. Grounded in historical, ethnographic, and linguistic research, the essays span four centuries and focus on the Subarctic, Northeast, Northwest Coast, California, Southwest, Great Basin, and Plains as well as the region at the core of Fogelson's research, the Southeast. The contributors explore many of the theoretical issues central to Fogelson's work and, more broadly, scholarship on Native North America at the turn of the twenty-first century: culture, history, and power; personhood and creativity; historical consciousness and ethnographic representation; identity, alterity, and hybridity; and the politics of culture. Many of the essays also exhibit a penchant for reflexivity, collaboration, irony, and wordplay—all of which were characteristic of Fogelson's work long before they became hallmarks of postmodern and postcolonial anthropology.

The contributors represent several generations of Fogelson's students, from notable senior scholars to others in the early stages of their careers. Two contributors, Regna Darnell and Peter Nabokov, are close colleagues of Fogelson rather than former students. Most of the essays gathered here were originally presented in two double sessions honoring Fogelson at the 1996 annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association. A handful of papers presented at the sessions could not be included in this volume—most tragically, a paper on representing indigenous peoples by the late Sharon K. Stephens. A student of Fogelson's as both an undergraduate and graduate student, Stephens's research on the Sami of Finland and Norway (e.g., Stephens 1995) advanced the tradition of scholarship on the circumpolar North pioneered by Fogelson's mentor, A. Irving Hallowell . . .

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