Indigenous Literatures and Other Arts
Course Title: Indigenous Literatures and Other Arts
This seminar will actively juxtapose works of alphabetic literature with works of visual and installation arts and with built environments produced by American Indian, Oceanic, and other Indigenous writers and artists. We will ask: What happens to Indigenous “literary” engagement and scholarship when we expand our archive of Indigenous self-representation and when we center Indigenous systems of aesthetics and Indigenous technologies, both old and new? In addition to published and digital primary and secondary works, we will make good use of the UW's amazing local resources, such as the Burke Museum’s state-of-the-art facility, diverse Indigenous collections, and outdoor spaces; the Intellectual House’s structure, decorations, and outdoor spaces; the Indigenous Walking Tour; and other examples of Indigenous texts and art works on the Seattle campus.
In order to take advantage of our local material resources, we will need to meet primarily in person—and at multiple locations on campus rather than only in our assigned classroom—though we may occasionally meet on Zoom in order to facilitate sharing screens. We will read, view, and encounter a select group of texts, art works, and built environments in common, but students will also have opportunities to explore and develop their own interests. We will prioritize discussion of our primary texts, art works, and built environments, supported by article- and chapter-length secondary readings, as well as regular close reading and response, which will help us focus on details within and across works and across media and forms.
Primary texts include:
Heid E. Erdrich, Curator of Ephemera at the New Museum for Archaic Media
Eric Gansworth, A Half-Life of Cardio-Pulmonary Function: Poems and Paintings
Patricia Grace, Potiki
Deborah Miranda, Bad Indians: A Tribal Memoir
Beth Piatote, The Beadworkers: Stories
Robert Sullivan, Star Waka
Course syllabus is available on the "Files" tab.
*Please note: the version of the syllabus posted on Canvas is slightly different from the version I sent as an email attachment on 12/21. I had to make one adjustment to accommodate a guest speaker.