Download Maurice Kenny: Celebrations of a Mohawk Writer by Penelope Myrtle Kelsey PDF

By Penelope Myrtle Kelsey

Explores the paintings of Maurice Kenny, a pivotal determine in American Indian literature from the Fifties to the current.

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We are reminded that history is often one-sided and recorded by the “winners,” if there are any winners in this history. In giving a voice to Kiosaeton’s thoughts on meeting Jogues, we are reminded that there was an Iroquois acceptance or tolerance of others’ beliefs, as long as those views were not forced on others. This forcible proselytizing had a much different result. We enter into a dialogue through Kenny’s poems, causing us to think out both sides. Kiosaeton speaks to Jogues in the poem bearing his name: Eat now.

Whether in the purely historical series, such as Blackrobe and Tekonwatonti, or the poetic musings inspired by history as in “Sand Creek, Colorado,” where Kenny’s recurring lament is summed-up in the lines, “the state marker says nothing / of the women, the children / or White Antelope’s cry . 1 I first became aware of Maurice Kenny’s writing in the late 1980s. I had moved to New York City from rural western New York State. My grandparents were living on the Tuscarora Nation in Lewiston, with my parents and a handful of other Mohawk relatives living just seven miles north in Youngstown.

For our amazing ability to endure, recover, restore our ancient values and life ways, and then blossom. . ”11 Continuance celebrates our survival and ensures the future of our communities. Continuance is the survival of cultural memories and practices as a mode of resistance to settler-colonialism. ”12 Performance—including powwow, ceremonial dance, contemporary theater, song, and storytelling—is central to the continuance of our traditions and nations. W. Richard West, Jr. (Southern Cheyenne) affirms this idea: Dance is the very embodiment of Indigenous values and represents the response of Native Americans to complex and sometimes difficult historical experiences.

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