Mishuana Goeman on the New Books Network
The maps drawn up by early settlers to plot their inexorable expansion were not the first representations of North American space. Colonialism does not simply impose a new reality, after all, but attempts to shatter and discard whole systems of understanding. Indigenous maps preceded the colonial encounter and indigenous maps persist is this extended colonial moment.
In Mark My Words: Native Women Mapping Our Nations (University of Minnesota Press, 2013), Mishuana Goeman finds in the poetry and prose of Native women authors the maps of both colonialism’s persistence and resistance to its ongoing containments. Goeman shows how writers like E. Pauline Johnson, Joy Harjo, Leslie Marmon Silko, and Heid Erdrich point toward a Native future beyond the settler models of territory, jurisdiction, and race.