White Appropriation of FN Cultural Symbols and Idiom.

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6079_Smith_W

Yeah, I get that you are supportive of that.

It isn't a value judgment to acknowledge that I am on Treaty Six Territory, or you on Treaty One. Fact is, First Nation Sovereignty and recognition of unceded territory is something our government acknowledged in the Royal Proclamation of 1763. So it is also a matter that should not be up for debate.

How people want to deal with that unresolved debt is, I agree, another matter.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Gee, it might be nice if some of them would get over themselves and acknowledge that, even once.

Would once be enough?

Quote:
Especially in a meeting among themselves, which is the place to come to terms with those problems. It might mean fewer of those mistakes in the treatment of First Nations people that medical professionals seem to keep making. But....

That's a bit of a stretch.

Maybe doctors should also start all meetings with some speech about women, and then magically they'll stop misdiagnosing women with heart problems.

I think the reason something like this is contentious -- and perhaps called "tokenism" -- is that it's a speech without any specific plan of action.  I can see how some might feel exactly like they did 40 years ago, having to stand and recite the Lord's Prayers as a prerequisite to being allowed to learn about fractions.  Why? 

6079_Smith_W

I just mentioned the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Calls to Action.  Remember that?

http://www.trc.ca/websites/trcinstitution/File/2015/Findings/Calls_to_Ac...

If you think there is no specific plan of action, maybe you might want to read the 94 points. Start with Numbers 18 through 24, the ones specifically directed at healthcare; but there are plenty of others relevant to the healthcare system, and recognition of sovreignty.

But if some organizations think basic courtesies are beneath them, or too simple to be of any  importance it might be an indication of how little they understand.

Or maybe they don't realize it isn't solely for the Indigenous people who are quite aware of where they are, but at least as much for the benefit of us non-Indigenous people who have a long way to go with grasping the concept. 

(edit)

But really, if you think I am being a bit harsh, there actually is a good reason why those doctors got flamed. The fact they tried to weasel their way out of it didn't make it any better.

 

 

cco

voice of the damned wrote:

From what I can tell, there isn't much else about aboriginal/settler conflict in the rest of the history section; a few lines about Riel, and something about aboriginals getting the vote in 1960. I think you could probably make a pretty strong case for information about unceded land being included on the test, given that it is an official government document.

As someone who'll be taking that test soon: That's the Harper test/guide. It hasn't been updated since Trudeau took power. Harper's government, obviously, had a particular interest in describing the history of FN/settler relations as cheery, give or take an epidemic or two.

6079_Smith_W
voice of the damned

cco wrote:
voice of the damned wrote:

From what I can tell, there isn't much else about aboriginal/settler conflict in the rest of the history section; a few lines about Riel, and something about aboriginals getting the vote in 1960. I think you could probably make a pretty strong case for information about unceded land being included on the test, given that it is an official government document.

As someone who'll be taking that test soon: That's the Harper test/guide. It hasn't been updated since Trudeau took power. Harper's government, obviously, had a particular interest in describing the history of FN/settler relations as cheery, give or take an epidemic or two.

Thanks for the info. Yeah, it makes sense that that's something Harper's government would have written.

Still, since we're going on three years since the ouster of Harper, I'd be curious to know how much media attention has been paid to the need to re-word the guide. I'm guessing not that much, though I recognize that decisions like that(unlike decisions to recite something before a meeting) take a bit of planning.

voice of the damned

Magoo wrote:

I think the reason something like this is contentious -- and perhaps called "tokenism" -- is that it's a speech without any specific plan of action.  I can see how some might feel exactly like they did 40 years ago, having to stand and recite the Lord's Prayers as a prerequisite to being allowed to learn about fractions.  Why? 

Well, a closer parallel(given your critique) might be the Lord's Prayer recited by a group of people who otherwise have little interest in religious observance, and are just doing it because they know it's a way to look good to certain sections of public opinion.

Because it seems to me there are two objections to such compulsory recitals...

1. It's an infringements on the rights of people who don't want to say the words.

2. It's a useless and superficial display of adherence to certain values.

I think your criticism, in the above post, is closer to No 2. than to No. 1. Back to your classroom example, if the overwhelming majority of students in the class were devout Christians who thought the Lord's Prayer was an indispensable part of the school day, it would be answer the question "Why?"  

Oh, and I think I'll take the liberty of starting a new thread about the broader issues here, since these tangents might not be entirely proper for the Indigenous forum.

cco

voice of the damned wrote:

Still, since we're going on three years since the ouster of Harper, I'd be curious to know how much media attention has been paid to the need to re-word the guide. I'm guessing not that much, though I recognize that decisions like that(unlike decisions to recite something before a meeting) take a bit of planning.

I heard through the grapevine that an overhaul of both the test and the guide are in the works, but that progress has been slow. That's secondhand, so take it with a grain of salt.

voice of the damned

cco wrote:
voice of the damned wrote:

Still, since we're going on three years since the ouster of Harper, I'd be curious to know how much media attention has been paid to the need to re-word the guide. I'm guessing not that much, though I recognize that decisions like that(unlike decisions to recite something before a meeting) take a bit of planning.

I heard through the grapevine that an overhaul of both the test and the guide are in the works, but that progress has been slow. That's secondhand, so take it with a grain of salt.

Thanks. I'm guessing the Liberal copywriters are bending themselves into pretzels to make the indigenous-white relationship in of Canada sound worse than Harper had it, without outright using  words like "imperialism" and "genocide". I'd suggest "colonialism" and related words as relatively non-combustible catch-alls.

voice of the damned

Oh, and the new thread I've started is here...

https://tinyurl.com/y8ex4jxm

 

quizzical

voice of the damned wrote:

(POSTED BEFORE I READ SMITH'S REPLY ABOVE)

I've just been looking at the History section of the government's citizenship-test study guide... 

Aboriginal Peoples

When Europeans explored Canada they found all regions occupied by native peoples they called Indians, because the first explorers thought they had reached the East Indies. The native people lived off the land, some by hunting and gathering, others by raising crops. The Huron-Wendat of the Great Lakes region, like the Iroquois, were farmers and hunters. The Cree and Dene of the Northwest were hunter-gatherers. The Sioux were nomadic, following the bison (buffalo) herd. The Inuit lived off Arctic wildlife. West Coast natives preserved fish by drying and smoking. Warfare was common among Aboriginal groups as they competed for land, resources and prestige.

The arrival of European traders, missionaries, soldiers and colonists changed the native way of life forever. Large numbers of Aboriginals died of European diseases to which they lacked immunity. However, Aboriginals and Europeans formed strong economic, religious and military bonds in the first 200 years of coexistence which laid the foundations of Canada.

This seems like a rather idealized picture, to say the least, as if the aboriginals just died accidentally from disease, and then everyone just jumped straight into "forming strong economic, religious, and military bonds".

From what I can tell,

my family were first contact east coast. everything has been appropriated and our history erased. it's a huge portion of the settlement of this continent too everyone is missing.

if you're actually interested follow the link below and research the names. easily all found on line. it's an interesting period detail of this land prior and after contact.

the genocide is almost unbearable to realize once you find your history. and you find direct ancestors who loved you back then as generations to come to fight for. the history of Chief Jean Baptiste is a wild one.

it won't let me paste link sorry. look up Chegau Mi'kmaq family and Chief Jean Baptiste you will learn probably more than you want about when the real appropriation started.

voice of the damned

Thanks, quizzical. I'll give that a look.

quizzical

hope you do. lot's of missing history just found through one original first contact family.

i was interested to find an alternate history of the american war of independence and how land speculators - wanting to make money - started the war and ended up destroying so much Indigenous.

Rev Pesky

Emily Carr painting renamed:

Why the Art Gallery of Ontario removed 'Indian' from the name of this Emily Carr painting

The Art Gallery of Ontario has scrubbed the word "Indian" from the title of a painting by the late Canadian artist Emily Carr, because "that is a word that causes pain," curator Georgiana Uhlyarik says.

The 1929 painting originally known as Indian Church was re-hung in the Toronto museum in early May under the new name Church at Yuquot Village, a nod to the B.C. Indigenous community where the church was located. 

"We feel that we are moving something forward, rather than staying in one place and repeating ... the hurt of that word," Uhlyarik, the co-leader of the AGO's department of Indigenous and Canadian art, told As It Happens host Carol Off. 

​...Uhlyarik said the AGO consulted the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nation, on whose territory the church was located, before making the change.

"It was the very first phone call that we made," she said.

​..."Carr was quite fascinated with it," Uhlyarik said. "It's a really quite a critical painting in her career."

Carr, who died in 1945, named the painting herself.

In that the name of the painting was given to it by the artist, I would assume the name was an integral part of the painting. So what gives the gallery the right to make changes to the painting?

And why would the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nation have any input into the painting?

Rev Pesky

quizzical wrote:

i was interested to find an alternate history of the american war of independence and how land speculators - wanting to make money - started the war and ended up destroying so much Indigenous.

If you want a very good take on the War of Independence, the best place to start is Thomas Paine's "Common Sense"

Paine was not a land speculator, but the pamphlet he wrote, urging the British colonies to become independent of Britain was the most important document in that event.

Per Wikipedia:

Common Sense is a pamphlet written by Thomas Paine in 1775–76 advocating independence from Great Britain to people in the Thirteen Colonies. Written in clear and persuasive prose, Paine marshaled moral and political arguments to encourage common people in the Colonies to fight for egalitarian government. It was published anonymously on January 10, 1776, at the beginning of the American Revolution, and became an immediate sensation.

It was sold and distributed widely and read aloud at taverns and meeting places. In proportion to the population of the colonies at that time (2.5 million), it had the largest sale and circulation of any book published in American history. As of 2006, it remains the all-time best selling American title, and is still in print today. 

...Historian Gordon S. Wood described Common Sense as "the most incendiary and popular pamphlet of the entire revolutionary era".

While land specualtors may have benefitted from American independence, and may have been actively supporting that independence, it is clear from the reception "Common Sense" got that the average citizen was more than ready to accept it's message.

voice of the damned

Rev Pesky wrote:

Emily Carr painting renamed:

Why the Art Gallery of Ontario removed 'Indian' from the name of this Emily Carr painting

The Art Gallery of Ontario has scrubbed the word "Indian" from the title of a painting by the late Canadian artist Emily Carr, because "that is a word that causes pain," curator Georgiana Uhlyarik says.

The 1929 painting originally known as Indian Church was re-hung in the Toronto museum in early May under the new name Church at Yuquot Village, a nod to the B.C. Indigenous community where the church was located. 

"We feel that we are moving something forward, rather than staying in one place and repeating ... the hurt of that word," Uhlyarik, the co-leader of the AGO's department of Indigenous and Canadian art, told As It Happens host Carol Off. 

​...Uhlyarik said the AGO consulted the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nation, on whose territory the church was located, before making the change.

"It was the very first phone call that we made," she said.

​..."Carr was quite fascinated with it," Uhlyarik said. "It's a really quite a critical painting in her career."

Carr, who died in 1945, named the painting herself.

In that the name of the painting was given to it by the artist, I would assume the name was an integral part of the painting. So what gives the gallery the right to make changes to the painting?

And why would the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nation have any input into the painting?

Apparently, Agatha Christie's book about the doomed aristocrats on the island has gone from being called Ten Little N****rs, set on N****r Island, to Ten Little Indians, set on Indian Island, to And The There Were None, still set on Indian Island, and now And Then There Were None, set on Soldier Island(with commensurate changes to the poem in question).

And I can honestly say I don't have a problem with that. Then again, Agatha Christie was pretty much a pulp hack, who I don't think was ever trying to express serious ideas or emotions. I might think differently if her work had more literary or philosophical merit.

voice of the damned

Rev Pesky wrote:

quizzical wrote:

i was interested to find an alternate history of the american war of independence and how land speculators - wanting to make money - started the war and ended up destroying so much Indigenous.

If you want a very good take on the War of Independence, the best place to start is Thomas Paine's "Common Sense"

Paine was not a land speculator, but the pamphlet he wrote, urging the British colonies to become independent of Britain was the most important document in that event.

Per Wikipedia:

Common Sense is a pamphlet written by Thomas Paine in 1775–76 advocating independence from Great Britain to people in the Thirteen Colonies. Written in clear and persuasive prose, Paine marshaled moral and political arguments to encourage common people in the Colonies to fight for egalitarian government. It was published anonymously on January 10, 1776, at the beginning of the American Revolution, and became an immediate sensation.

It was sold and distributed widely and read aloud at taverns and meeting places. In proportion to the population of the colonies at that time (2.5 million), it had the largest sale and circulation of any book published in American history. As of 2006, it remains the all-time best selling American title, and is still in print today. 

...Historian Gordon S. Wood described Common Sense as "the most incendiary and popular pamphlet of the entire revolutionary era".

While land specualtors may have benefitted from American independence, and may have been actively supporting that independence, it is clear from the reception "Common Sense" got that the average citizen was more than ready to accept it's message.

If you can get a copy of Bertrand Russell's book of essays Why I Am Not A Christian, he has a good essay summarizing the life and work of Tom Paine. And a very interesting life it was.

voice of the damned

Ah, here we go. The Fate Of Thomas Paine...

https://tinyurl.com/ydar6lyl

6079_Smith_W

The story they don't like to tell about the revolution is that anyone who didn't agree was burned out and had their newspapers wrecked. So it wasn't about freedom for everyone. That's how part of my family wound up in Ontario, while the other part fought for Vermont (and another went to Europe to ask the French king to help finance the revolution).

As for how they affected Indigenous people, all of those wars (1812 especially) wound up with them fighting the hardest because it was their land,  being used by both sides and ultimately losing. The revolution came on the heels of the so-called French and Indian War, after all.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_and_Indian_War

Joseph Brant is someone from that war we should all know, though:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Brant

And the story of what the Americans did in Montreal is worth reading.

quizzical

thin gruel in your post Smith and in the wiki links.

lot's more went on in Acadia than has been recounted. i guess maybe you can only get the full impact from reading your family story from back then.  

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
In that the name of the painting was given to it by the artist, I would assume the name was an integral part of the painting. So what gives the gallery the right to make changes to the painting?

I suppose they have the legal right, if they own the painting.  So-called "moral rights" could theoretically prevent it if Carr were still alive and protested.  But I would certainly agree that it's a slightly worrisome and slightly gross thing to do.  If the painting -- title and all -- is that offensive then they shouldn't have half-assed a weak compromise, they should have taken the painting down.  Heck, maybe even replace it with a painting by an Indigenous artist.  Just not Jason Carter!

6079_Smith_W

I know quizzical. Didn't want to swamp people too much. My point was that even these stories that are part of the established historical record aren't how the story gets recounted by the Americans.

Or the Canadians, when it comes to the role Indigenous people played in 1812.

 

voice of the damned

If the painting -- title and all -- is that offensive then they shouldn't have half-assed a weak compromise, they should have taken the painting down. 

Well, your suggested approach might be vulnerable to an ad absurdum. If Michelangelo's David had been given some offensive title, eg. Jew Boy With A Slingshot, would the proper course of action be to stop displaying it?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Sure.  It's just one of many statues, and the world wouldn't end without it.

But the converse ad absurdum would be to ask whether, if his exposed penis offended people (too carnal; not godly; perpetuates cis-sexual norms, etc.) would it be better to just put it in a warehouse somewhere, or hire someone to chisel away the penis until he looks like he's just wearing a Speedo?

I don't think the title of a creative work, if it's chosen by the creator of that work, is easily separable from the work itself.  "The Vagina Monologues" should never be performed as "The Hoo-Ha Monologues", even if the author dies. 

Rev Pesky

voice of the damned wrote:

Apparently, Agatha Christie's book about the doomed aristocrats on the island has gone from being called Ten Little N****rs, set on N****r Island, to Ten Little Indians, set on Indian Island, to And The There Were None, still set on Indian Island, and now And Then There Were None, set on Soldier Island(with commensurate changes to the poem in question).

And I can honestly say I don't have a problem with that. Then again, Agatha Christie was pretty much a pulp hack, who I don't think was ever trying to express serious ideas or emotions. I might think differently if her work had more literary or philosophical merit.

The changes to the title were made during Christie's lifetime. In fact it was never published in the USA as Ten Little N******s.

​I agree with you as to the philosophical merit of Christie's work, but definitely do not agree as to it's literary merit. The book under discussion is one Christie's most popular works. 

Outside of that (courtesy Wikipedia):

 The Guinness Book of World Records lists Christie as the best-selling novelist of all time. Her novels have sold roughly 2 billion copies, and her estate claims that her works come third in the rankings of the world's most-widely published books, behind only Shakespeare's works and the Bible. Half of the sales are of English language editions, and the other half in translation. According to Index Translationum, she remains the most-translated individual author – having been translated into at least 103 languages. And Then There Were None is Christie's best-selling novel, with 100 million sales to date, making it the world's best-selling mystery ever, and one of the best-selling books of all time.

I honestly don't think you can appeal to such a huge number of people across many different cultures and languages without some sort of literary merit.

Sorry for that drift. Back to the matter at hand.

Would Emily Carr have chosen a different name for the painting if she were alive today? Possibly, maybe even probably. But it takes a special kind of arrogance to re-name a painting after the fact, imposing your own 'artistic' decision over the creator of the work. In this case changing the name to "Church at Yuquot Village", which has all the cachet of a gas station postcard.

voice of the damned

I honestly don't think you can appeal to such a huge number of people across many different cultures and languages without some sort of literary merit.

Well, it has the same sort of literary merit as any other successful mystery story, ie. it keeps the reader glued to the page waiting to find out what's going on. But that purpose doesn't really depend on whether they're on N Word Island, Indian Island, or Soldier Island.  

(In a hurry, maybe I'll flesh out my ideas more later.)

6079_Smith_W

Someone had better correct all those references to Mona Lisa, Las Meninas, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon and Whistler's Mother I guess, seeing as they ruin what is an integral part of the works. Or is this just a thing when we are concern trolling about Indigenous issues?

https://www.cnn.com/2015/12/14/world/rijksmuseum-renaming-artworks/index...

 

voice of the damned

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Someone had better correct all those references to Mona Lisa, Las Meninas, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon and Whistler's Mother I guess, seeing as they ruin what is an integral part of the works. Or is this just a thing when we are concern trolling about Indigenous issues?

https://www.cnn.com/2015/12/14/world/rijksmuseum-renaming-artworks/index.html[/quote]

The Musee D'Orsay still lists James McNeill Whistler's most famous work as...

Arrangement en gris et noir n°1, also called Portrait de la mère de l'artiste [Arrangement in Grey and Black No. 1, also called Portrait of the Artist's Mother]

So no, the title has not quite been changed, and even the alternative name is not the more famous "Whistler's Mother".

And I would assume that the nickname didn't come about because someone decided there was something wrong with the original title, and hence it needed to be changed(in other words, deliberately changing the artist's intended idea), but rather because lots of people started calling it by the other name.

Even wikipedia, which lists the painting as Whistler's Mother, clarified that that is the "colloquial" name, not the official one.

Personally, if people in everyday conversation want to start calling "Indian Church" something else, I'd have no problem with that, as long as the artist's original title isn't erased from history.

Rev Pesky

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Or is this just a thing when we are concern trolling about Indigenous issues?

There's that royal 'we' again. How different it sounds when you write "Or is this just a thing when I am concern trolling about Indigenous issues."

Emily Carr had great respect for the First Nations of the West coast, and that respect runs through her work like a river. Here is what she had to say:

I glory in our wonderful west and I hope to leave behind me some of the relics of its first primitive greatness. These things should be to us Canadians what the ancient Briton's relics are to the English. Only a few more years and they will be gone forever into silent nothingness and I would gather my collection together before they are forever past.

Emily Carr spent much time with West coast First Nations, from Uclulet to Alaska. One of the things I know is that she would not have used the term 'Indian' if she felt it was in any way disrespectful.

​By the way, the picture in question was bought by Lawren Harris and showcased in his home. He considered it was her best work.

6079_Smith_W

I think you're begging the question VOTD. You think the vast majority of people who know Da Vinci's or Picasso's work only by their common names don't have an appreciation for them? I call bullshit. 

Picasso's painting was given its current name because the original one was deemed offensive. Picasso didn't actually like the new one, but I guess he liked having his work having a place at an exhibition more.

Speaking of which, do you imagine that similar standards don't exist for other kinds of public art - be it film makers editing or avoiding certain language or images to get a certain rating, or words getting bleeped out on public radio? Does that totally ruin it for the viewer, or invalidate the work?

So really, this faux artistic freedom argument in defense of racism is kind of rich.

And the names of paintings in the Rijksmuseum have been changed, which is why I posted the article.

And Rev, this has nothing to do with how nice a person Emily Carr was.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Speaking of which, do you imagine that similar standards don't exist for other kinds of public art - be it film makers editing or avoiding certain language or images to get a certain rating, or words getting bleeped out on public radio? Does that totally ruin it for the viewer, or invalidate the work?

Around when it first came out, I saw the movie Blue Velvet.  Then, a few years later, I saw a bit of it broadcast on CTV at 9pm. 

In the scene where Dennis Hopper's character says "Let's fuckin' fuckin' fuck", a noticeably bad overdub said "Let's freakin' freakin' freak."

If the real Blue Velvet is just too offensive to show on CTV at 9pm, fine.  But then why try to bowdlerize it?  Why not just show "The Apple Dumpling Gang", in that case?

6079_Smith_W

Sure, same for when the one foot on the floor rule applied in Hollywood, or not showing a toilet - things which, like these name changes, most people would not even notice unless they were told.

Point is Magoo, these standards exist. And to take Picasso's case as an example, they even exist for great art. Film makers and studios do have the option of not submitting their work to them. But evidently it wasn't that much of an issue for Picasso, or Lynch that they wanted to keep them out of that public arena.

Why it is such a big deal in this thread? Well that's another question.

voice of the damned

Smith wrote:

You think the vast majority of people who know Da Vinci's or Picasso's work only by their common names don't have an appreciation for them? I call bullshit. 

Let's go back to Whistler. I would say that while, yes, I had an appreciation of his famous painting when I knew it as Whistler's Mother, my appreciation was enhanced when I found out in my university art history class that his chosen title for it was Arrangement in Grey And Black No. 1.  

That said, if I were to reference the work in everyday conversation, I'd likely just call it Whistler's Mother, partly because I likely wouldn't rememeber the full title(just as I can't remember every single detail of the painting itself), and also because the person I was speaking too would likely call it by the vernacular name.

As for the name of Picasso's work being changed, yeah, you can count me as against that one too. Start a thread on that, and I'll state my case against it there.

Magoo wrote:

If the real Blue Velvet is just too offensive to show on CTV at 9pm, fine.  But then why try to bowdlerize it? 

There's a certain element of "wanting to have it all" arrogance in that kind of bowdlerization. You want to display a work of art, but you don't want to take it on its own terms.

One of my favorite teachers in high school was an aesthetically old-school priest, who when teaching MacBeth, made a point of switching to the non-bowdlerized book when he came to the parts that had been omitted from the assigned text. With full explanation as to the meaning, of course.

Why not just show "The Apple Dumpling Gang", in that case?

And promote gambling?! Best make up a voiceover to give kids the impression that Bill Bixby is just playing Crazy Eights for fun.

 

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Why it is such a big deal in this thread? Well that's another question.

I get the feeling you probably have a ready answer.

Anyway, Stalinist historical revisionism gives me the creeps.  Like I said, the AGO has every right to choose not to show an offensive painting.  I don't feel like they have the right to change the title the artist gave it without consulting her. 

Rev Pesky

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Why it is such a big deal in this thread? Well that's another question.

Big enough deal to get you to post three times on this particular issue.

quizzical

my question would be "did they consult the Nuu chah nulth from Yuquot about their feelings on this?

 

6079_Smith_W

In answer to your question, quizzical, yes they did:

http://nationalpost.com/news/canada/renaming-of-emily-carr-painting-spur...

Actually there is an interesting objection raised in the article about erasing historical context, which is considerably more valid than the argument being raised here. It is worth paying attention to, IMO.

But if the people of that community were consulted and supportive of the change, the objections here about artistic integrity seem pretty thin. After all, the change names the community, something the generic "Indian Church" does not.

Of course if we have to hold a bulwark against Stalinist revisionism I presume the next crusade is to change Kitchener back to Berlin, and restore all those Black, Indigenous and Asian jokes that were so essential to Bugs Bunny cartoons, right?

Again, assuming that is the real point, and not just using this as a foil to undermine efforts at reconciliation.

 

 

quizzical

tks smith. good article. i agree about the erasing history point for my own pov.

but it's my pov. there's good artists and master carvers out of Yuquot. they would understand art pieces and their names more so than the average person and are the one's who had a relationship with Carr.  if they think the path to reconcilliation is this way then it is the one to take.

i am still going to ask personally the artists from there i know next time i get a chance.

 

Rev Pesky

6079_Smith_W wrote:

After all, the change names the community, something the generic "Indian Church" does not.

See, this is kind of the problem. Not naming the community in which the church sits may have been intentional. In other words, the artist may have wanted this particular church to 'stand in' for all the churches in all the communities. Many artists use specific settings and themes to illustrate broader principles. 

I will say that different artists have different levels of protectiveness over their work. I spoke once with W. P. Kinsella, and asked him how he felt about the way Hollywood dealt with Shoeless Joe. His response was to ask me how I thought the baker felt about what kind of sandwiches were made from her bread. Mind you, he probably got a pretty fair pay cheque out of that book, so perhaps felt generous.

But I know other artists who are more protective than he was. I don't know how Emily Carr felt, and I don't know how she would have felt about this. I do know that once the artist is dead, there's no way to ask her.

I also believe an artist deserves a level of respect. I don't think running around 'correcting' artworks shows that respect.

6079_Smith_W

@ quizzical.

Yes, I also respect and understand Sonny Assu's point that it should be left to show the racist and colonial language artists used. But that is one person's opinion; and there are plenty who feel the opposite way about it. Changing names and language is included in the points of the Truth and Reconciliation report, after all. And the bottom line for me is that they did talk to people in that community.

And after all, there are still plenty of examples of racist language and racist actions. Do we need to keep around names like Squaw Rapids and Edmonton Eskimos (another racist word that was removed in the Rijksmuseum renaming) in order to prove that racism exists? Frankly, I think people remember just fine.

The argument also made in that article that the artists' work is "sacrosanct" especially when it is a generic name, is frankly petulant, IMO. If anything is Stalinist it is the colonial mindset that imposed that false language, and erased place names and culture in the first place.

There was a much bigger hullaballoo made about Lemay and Gaboury's Louis Riel sculpture, to the degree that one MLA camped out to prevent its removal. Too bad. If the Metis want to have a more stately representation of Manitoba's Father of Confederation they have every right to change it.

http://www.mhs.mb.ca/docs/mb_history/42/rielstatue.shtml

And Rev, white people taking Indigenous culture and images and using it as a representation is precisely what appropriation is. Whatever Carr's intent was, if you are arguing in favour of that, well we have plenty of examples of that on nickels, in front of cigar stores, on sport team logos, and car names.

Spinning this in that way is probably somewhere in the category of "noble" stereotypes that we also see all over the damned place, and which aren't much better because it is still white people making up stuff.

That is why adding the context of which community it is isn't just erasing the racist name, it is adding that context, and hopefully what Carr's real intent may have been.

 

 

6079_Smith_W

And  quizzical, just ran across this book yesterday. Perhaps this is part of that alternative history you are looking for:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/book-party/wp/2016/06/23/a-cultural-...

I do know you are talking more about personal histories, but from looking at my own (I have a couple of geneaologists in my family) the mercenaries and orangemen and others it turned up doesn't really jive with Donald Trump's "taming the continent" rhetoric.

Slaughtered, trashed and burned the continent is more like it.

quizzical

not sure what you want me to read at the wash post link so cant answer.

look up Jean-Baptiste Cope pretty surface stuff though in wiki whitewashed minimized. a primer.

the federal gov it seems is busy removing replacing stuff but the link i add gives note to a 1752 treaty signed by Jean Baptiste. it says some interesting stuff. from references in it you can search more. then you can see the cover up and expropriation.

Jean Baptiste was pretty pissed when the British broke it. scalps were lost forts burned. to this day my family in Cape Breton speaks only French even though the king ended up giving significant land grants - not to be mistaken with reserve land - to get them out of what is now halifax.

the hidden stories are fascinating. but the reality is Acadia is unceded territory as much as BC is.

why can't i paste links?? sorry.

google 'Peace and Friendship Treaty' it has the government link at top of scroll.

voice of the damned

Pesky wrote:

I will say that different artists have different levels of protectiveness over their work. I spoke once with W. P. Kinsella, and asked him how he felt about the way Hollywood dealt with Shoeless Joe. His response was to ask me how I thought the baker felt about what kind of sandwiches were made from her bread. Mind you, he probably got a pretty fair pay cheque out of that book, so perhaps felt generous.

In high school English class(not the one taught by the aforementioned priest), we studied Watership Down, and also watched the animated film. In preparation for the latter, the teacher read us an intro Richard Adams had written for a book containing a condensed version of the story, illustrated with stills from the movie. 

Adams opened his intro by opining that people who say "I haven't read the book, but I saw the film" might as well just say "I haven't read the book, but I ate breakfast this morning". He then went on to say that people who liked the story in the condensed book should read the novel, people who like the pictures should see the movie, and people who like the story and the pictures should do both.   

6079_Smith_W

@ quizzical

It was a book review of a book on the history of class in the United States. Again, not the personal history you were talking about, but something complementary. And thanks for the links. I will check it out.

 

voice of the damned

Smith wrote:

Of course if we have to hold a bulwark against Stalinist revisionism I presume the next crusade is to change Kitchener back to Berlin

Well, at this point, it'll probably just cause more confusion if we change Kitchener back to Berlin. I'd probably say the same thing in twenty years if Church In Yuquot Village is still known by that name, and someone suggests changing it back to Indian Church. (Though the confusion would probably be less than with Kitchener/Berlin, since that's the name of a city on the map that people are actually used to discussing and visiting).

Out of curiousity, though, Smith, do you think it was okay to change the name of Berlin to Kitchener out of deference to anti-German sentiment during World War I?  

6079_Smith_W

In the first place, changing a name for a racist reason (which was the case with Kitchener) is not the same as changing a name because it is racist (the name of Carr's painting). One is imposing colonial values; the other is removing them.

But I'm not the one comparing these actions to Stalin, which is why I asked if this is a big deal in all cases, or just when it comes to correcting racist names, and omitting the names of Indigenous communities.

 

 

 

Rev Pesky

6079_Smith_W wrote:

is not the same as changing a name because it is racist (the name of Carr's painting)

Emily Carr is a racist? Pardon me, not just a racist, but a racist who appropriated native art.

Well, that's an interesting take. 

6079_Smith_W

Everyone is affected by racism Rev. Whatever Carr's intent was, white people taking Indigenous stuff and using it in a representational way is appropriation. It is part of the reason why the gallery decided to change the name

. BTW I was able to see the painting for myself two days ago. I'd recommend anyone who has the opportunity to see it in the context of the works around it to do so.

https://www.thestar.com/entertainment/visualarts/opinion/2018/04/24/one-...

Rev Pesky

6079_Smith_W wrote:

white people taking Indigenous stuff and using it in a representational way is appropriation...

And what 'stuff' did Carr take?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Nothing says "Indigenous stuff" quite like a Christian church.

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