Off the Reservation: Reflections on Boundary-busting Border-crossing Loose Canons

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Beacon Press, 1999 - Literary Criticism - 262 pages
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In this captivating collection of unpublished and published essays, one of our most important scholars, Paula Gunn Allen, explores the symbiotic relationship between Native American culture and the larger Western world. Through her own history and that of other Native peoples, she searches for a connection that will link the eco-spiritual and implicitly multicultural heritage to the demands of an increasingly global and culturally unilateral community.
 

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Off the reservation: reflections on boundary-busting border-crossing loose canons

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Poet, novelist, feminist, and English professor (UCLA), Allen draws on her experiences as a woman of mixed Laguna and Lebanese heritage to critique contemporary American culture from the perspective ... Read full review

Contents

Dont Fence Me In
1
Haggles gynosophies
10
Notes Toward a Human Revolution
17
Phantoms and Fantasies in America
22
All the Good Indians 3 6
36
American Indian Mysticism
40
Where Is One Circle ?
58
Autonomy and Vulnerability
63
Ethnics in the Western Formalist Situation
132
Whos Telling This Story Anyway?
145
Thus Spake Pocahontas
163
La Franteranarrativities 15 The Autobiography of a Confluence
181
Yo Cruzo Siete Mares
193
My Lebanon
207
Going Home December 1992223
223
Geospiritual Narratives and the American Southwest
228

Father God and Rape Culture
66
Empowering Womens Spirituality
84
Indians Solipsisms and Archetypal Holocausts
93
Radiant Beings
101
The Woman I Love Is a Planet The Planet I Love Is a Tree
118
Wyrds orthographies
125
Here There Be Coyote
127
Notes
247
References
251
Credits
253
Acknowledgments
254
Index
255
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

Of Laguna Pueblo and Sioux descent, Allen was one of the best-known Native American writers and critics and cousin to another, Leslie Marmon Silko. She was born in Grants, New Mexico, on October 24, 1939. She received a bachelor's degree in English in 1966 and a master's degree of fine arts in creative writing in 1968 from the University of Oregon and a doctorate in American studies in 1975 from the University of New Mexico. She taught at numerous schools during her lifetime including San Francisco State, University of California at Berkeley and University of California at Los Angeles. She wrote 17 books including volumes of her own poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. She also edited important collections of Native American writing. She received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the University of California at Los Angeles, where she was a postdoctoral fellow in American Indian Studies. She received numerous awards including an American Book Award for editing Spider Woman's Granddaughters: Short Stories by American Indian Writers in 1990 and the Hubbell Medal in 1999. She devoted much of her work to combating oppression by critiquing the ideas that have sanctioned it. The Woman Who Owned the Shadows (1983), is about a woman who comes to realize that she is a lesbian. Allen explores and affirms for women and lesbians the ideas of Spider Grandmother who, in many Native American traditions, is the creator of the heavens, the earth, and all the spirit beings, and therefore an icon of female power. The Sacred Hoop (1986), is a collection of essays written over a number of years that explicitly argue that Native American literature, traditions, mythology, and spirituality can be powerful antidotes to white racism, sexism, and homophobia. She died of lung cancer on May 29, 2008.

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