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Imagic Moments: Indigenous North American Film

Lee Schweninger
Athens, Georgia : The University of Georgia Press, [2013]
9780820345147 (hardcover : alk. paper), 0820345148 (hardcover : alk. paper), 9780820345154 (pbk. : alk. paper), 0820345156 (pbk. : alk. paper)
"In Indigenous North American film Native Americans tell their own stories and thereby challenge a range of political and historical contradictions, including egregious misrepresentations by Hollywood. Although Indians in film have long been studied, especially as characters in Hollywood westerns, Indian film itself has received relatively little scholarly attention. In Imagic Moments Lee Schweninger offers a much-needed corrective, examining films in which the major inspiration, the source material, and the acting are essentially Native. Schweninger looks at a selection of mostly narrative fiction films from the United States and Canada and places them in historical and generic contexts. Exploring films such as Powwow Highway, Smoke Signals, and Skins, he argues that in and of themselves these films constitute and in fact emphatically demonstrate forms of resistance and stories of survival as they talk back to Hollywood. Self-representation itself can be seen as a valid form of resistance and as an aspect of a cinema of sovereignty in which the Indigenous peoples represented are the same people who engage in the filming and who control the camera. Despite their low budgets and often nonprofessional acting, Indigenous films succeed in being all the more engaging in their own right and are indicative of the complexity, vibrancy, and survival of myriad contemporary Native cultures."--Publisher's website.
  • Introduction: where to concentrate
  • He was still the chief: Masayesva's imagining Indians
  • Into the city: ordered freedom in The exiles
  • The native presence in film: House made of dawn
  • A concordance of narrative voices: Harold, trickster, and Harold of Orange
  • I don't do portraits: Medicine River and the art of photography
  • Keep your pony out of my garden: Powwow highway and "being Cheyenne"
  • Feeling extra magical: the art of disappearing in Smoke signals
  • Making his own music: death and life in The business of fancydancing
  • Sharing the kitchen: Naturally native and women in American Indian film
  • In the form of a spider: the interplay of narrative fiction and documentary in Skins
  • The stories pour out: taking control in The doe boy
  • Telling our own stories: seeking identity in Tkaronto
  • People come around in circles: Harjo's Four sheets to the wind
  • Epilogue: Barking water and beyond.
xv, 247 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
  • Includes bibliographical references (pages 229-238) and index.
  • Includes filmography.
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