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January 1994


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Mary Jane Miller <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 24 Jan 1994 13:05:18 -0500
text/plain (31 lines)
Without getting into the excesses of Political correctness the problems of
nomenclature can tell us something about different cultures. In Canada,
where <Cl earcut> was made,  a reader will find the words 'Indian',
'Aboriginal', ' member of the first nations',' indigenous person' and even
'native' - all in the same document - sometimes in the same sentence. What
you will rarely [ never?] find is "Native American"- or "Native Canadian"
for that matter. Francophones and Quebeckers use "l'amerindien."  which at
least acknowledges both history and history's mistakes. The terms are in
flux of course but up here tha nationality is never foregrounded inthis or
other instances. We abandoned 'Italian- Canadian', 'Jamaican-Canadian' some
years ago as inappropriate 'hyphenated Canadianism' which leaves us without
an easy way of conveying information that may be relevant in some contexts.
Add to that the fact that many indigenous people do not regard the
international borders as legitimate or even relevant to their history and
sense of place - and 'Native American or Canadian' become even more
problematic. Makes writing about the representation of indigenous people in
TV drama  for readers outside Canad  rather difficult.  Cold cheer from a
cold climate-- Mary Jane
Mary Jane Miller
Mary Jane Miller,
Dept. of Film Studies, Dramatic and Visual Arts,
Brock University,
St. Catharines, Ontario,
Canada, L2S 3A1.
Phon;e (416) 688 5550 ext 3584, Fax: (416) 682 9020,
 e-mail: [log in to unmask]