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A Review of AMERICAN INDIAN LITERARY NATIONALISM
~ Dr. Dawn Karima
AMERICAN INDIAN LITERARY NATIONALISM
Jace Weaver, Craig S. Womack, and Robert Warrior.
Albuquerque:UNM, 2006, ISBN#:0-8263-4073-3,
272 pages, paperback
"The consciousness of ourselves as Indigenous cultural beings is very important to our Existence as speaking-writing Indigenous people," writes Dr. Simon Ortiz in the foreword for AMERICAN INDIAN LITERARY NATIONALISM. The noted Arizona State University scholar continues, "In fact, cultural consciousness as Indigenous people is the bottom line. And that, more than anything else, has to do crucially with our cultural sovereignty as Indigenous people." This interesting book demonstrates the intersection between cultural sovereignty and literary criticism.
While many Native American authors focus on writing and fiction, this book proves to be unique due to its spotlight on Native Americans who practice the skill of literary criticism. AMERICAN INDIAN LITERARY NATIONALISM shows the ways in which Native American writers and thinkers utilize literature for the reification of their identity. The ideas in this book are fascinating and provocative and useful for readers from a variety of disciplines.
Three outstanding critical scholars: Jace Weaver, Craig S. Womack and Robert Warrior blend their perspectives and insights into literature and culture into this intriguing exploration. Each writer displays a distinctive style, yet each voice complements the others. This book is especially useful for scholars, educators, students and those who are interested in the ideologies of self-determination.
As headlines swirl around issues about particular authors, this book offers the opportunity to delve into the process of creating critiques of literature, based on its merits. Establishing guidelines and good measures for interpreting literary works are the domain of literary critics. AMERICAN INDIAN LITERARY NATIONALISM explores the evidence for estimating those Indigenous scholars, who evaluate creative writing and establish the canon.