Instructor: Prof Karim Mattar
In this course, we explore literary and cultural works by indigenous writers from around the world in relation to the histories of colonialism and incorporation to which their communities have been subject. Employing a broad comparative framework, and looking into the histories of indigenous communities in the United States, Kenya, Libya, Palestine, India, and New Zealand from the 19thcentury to the present as case studies, we ask how such texts address questions of collective historical trauma, and what new critical insights into the local / global dialectic might be gleaned when they are read alongside one another. All in all, we aim through our readings and discussions to develop what Chadwick Allen calls a strong, “trans-indigenous” literary critical response to the violence of colonial modernity. Primary texts include novels, poems, essays, films, and multimedia websites by Kateri Akiwenzie-Damm & Josie Douglas, Leslie Marmon Silko, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, Ibrahim al-Koni, Edward Said, Arundhati Roy, Reina Whaitiri & Robert Sullivan, Lee Tamahori, Cormac McCarthy, and others.