Thursday, May 21, 2015

Performative Indianess on Command

I wasn't going to get mad, but after thinking about it a while it is still there so here is my response to a call out by my employer for aboriginal employees to bring in their cultural items so that other employees could see them.  You know what?  I think it is offensive to ask for per formative indianness on command.

Then I thought some more, you want my indigenous items?  How about a copy of my Masters Degree? How about some links to the great creative online indigenous community?  The books by our writers?  How about a picture of my grandfather who was scarred through growing up in a church/government orphanage/residential school and the family dysfunctions that result from that?  How about his grandfather who died drunk and alone after spending all his money and time trying to fight the church who kept giving the land of the metis away to nice white people?  How about his father who lost half a year in prison for talking rebellion?  How about a copy of the government reports showing the ongoing gaps in outcome for aboriginal peoples?  How about a nice piece of beadwork that reads "genocide"?

But I suppose some drums and flowered bead work would make a more comfortable display than mine.  What would you put on your display?

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