Producing Sovereignty

Producing Sovereignty

The Rise of Indigenous Media in Canada

Karrmen Crey

Exploring how Indigenous media has flourished across Canada from the 1990s to the present

224 Pages, 6 x 9 in

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Details

Producing Sovereignty

The Rise of Indigenous Media in Canada

Series: Indigenous Americas

Karrmen Crey

ISBN: 9781517914509

Publication date: March 5th, 2024

224 Pages

25 black and white illustrations

8 x 5

"Producing Sovereignty is a must-read for those interested in the theoretical fundamentals of Indigenous media studies. By unearthing and revealing the subjugated histories and materiality of Indigenous artists and filmmakers, Karrmen Crey provides a crucial lens into the co-constitutive production of Indigenous aesthetics as an outcome of institutional contestations."—Brendan Hokowhitu, University of Queensland

 

"One of the most engaging and sophisticated books in the field, Producing Sovereignty uses highly immersive case studies to locate Indigenous media within wider social movements and cultural developments in North America. Karrmen Crey speaks to the decolonizing force of Indigenous media—not only as expressions of Indigenous cultural sovereignty but as destabilizing forces within contemporary settler societies."—Marian Bredin, coeditor of Canadian Television: Text and Context

 


Exploring how Indigenous media has flourished across Canada from the 1990s to the present

 

In the early 1990s, Indigenous media experienced a boom across Canada, resulting in a vast landscape of film, TV, and digital media. Coinciding with a resurgence of Indigenous political activism, Indigenous media highlighted issues around sovereignty and Indigenous rights to broader audiences in Canada. In Producing Sovereignty, Karrmen Crey considers the conditions—social movements, state policy, and evolutions in technology—that enabled this proliferation. 

 

Exploring the wide field of media culture institutions, Crey pays particular attention to those that Indigenous media makers engaged during this cultural moment, including state film agencies, arts organizations, provincial broadcasters, and more. Producing Sovereignty ranges from the formation of the Aboriginal Film and Video Art Alliance in the early 1990s and its partnership with the Banff Centre for the Arts to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s 2016 production of Highway of Tears—an immersive 360-degree short film directed by Anishinaabe filmmaker Lisa Jackson—highlighting works by Indigenous creators along the way and situating Indigenous media within contexts that pay close attention to the role of media-producing institutions.

 

Importantly, Crey focuses on institutions with limited scholarly attention, shifting beyond the work of the National Film Board of Canada to explore lesser-known institutions such as educational broadcasters and independent production companies that create programming for the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. Through its refusal to treat Indigenous media simply as a set of cultural aesthetics, Producing Sovereignty offers a revealing media history of this cultural moment.

Karrmen Crey is assistant professor of Aboriginal communication and media studies in the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University.