Contact Zones: Aboriginal and Settler Women in Canada's Colonial Past

Overview

Contact Zones makes a unique contribution to the history of Canadian women in imperialism and colonization. Through its attention to Native/Newcomer relations and women’s roles in the colonial project, the contributors add an important dimension to understanding how Canada was colonized and how Aboriginal and settler women responded to new regimes. Race, class, and gender are interrogated within Canada’s imperial and colonial system. The book challenges fixed dichotomies concerning the colonizer and the ...

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Overview

Contact Zones makes a unique contribution to the history of Canadian women in imperialism and colonization. Through its attention to Native/Newcomer relations and women’s roles in the colonial project, the contributors add an important dimension to understanding how Canada was colonized and how Aboriginal and settler women responded to new regimes. Race, class, and gender are interrogated within Canada’s imperial and colonial system. The book challenges fixed dichotomies concerning the colonizer and the colonized, and reveals the complexities of the colonial experience.

Aboriginal women like Pauline Johnson, Bernice Loft, and Ethel Brant Monture carved out spaces and shaped identities in both worlds. By recognizing the necessity to "perform" they enchanted and educated white audiences across Canada. At the same time Aboriginal women’s bodies were increasingly regulated by missionaries, Department of Indian Affairs agents, and schoolteachers. Aboriginal women were expected to consent to moral, sexual, and marital rules that white women were beginning to fight against. Social space, both private and public, provided the stage upon which the theatre of empire was acted out.

Contact Zones draws upon a vast array of primary sources to provide insight into the ubiquity and persistence of colonial discourse, and to demonstrate how it ultimately was an embodied experience. Above all, it shows how the colonial enterprise was about embodied contacts. What bodies belonged inside the nation, who were outsiders, and who transgressed the rules —- these are the questions at the heart of this provocative book.

University of Washington Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780774811361
  • Publisher: University of British Columbia Press
  • Publication date: 7/28/2006
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Katie Pickles is Senior Lecturer in the School of History at the University of Canterbury. Myra Rutherdale is Assistant Professor in the Department of History at York University.

University of Washington Press

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Table of Contents

IllustrationsAcknowledgmentsIntroduction / Katie Pickles and Myra RutherdalePart 1: Dressing and Performing Bodies: Aboriginal Women, Imperial Eyes and Betweenness1. Sewing for a Living: The Commodification of Women’s Artistic Production / Sherry Farell-Racette2. Championing the Native: E. Pauline Johnson Rejects the Squaw / Carole Gerson and Veronica Strong-Boag3. Performing for ‘Imperial Eyes’: Bernice Loft and Ethel Brant Monture, Ontario, 1930s-60s / Cecilia Morgan4. Spirited Subjects and Wounded Souls: Political Representations of an Im/moral Frontier / Jo-Anne FiskePart 2: Regulating the Body: Domesticity, Sexuality, and Transgression5. Metropolitan Knowledge, Colonial Practice and Indigenous Womanhood: Missions in Nineteenth-Century British Columbia / Adele Perry6. Creating Semi-Widows and Supernumerary Wives: Prohibiting Polygamy in Prairie Canada’s Aboriginal Communities to 1900 / Sarah A. Carter7. Intimate Surveillance: Indian Affairs, Colonization, and the Regulation of Aboriginal Women’s Sexuality / Robin Jarvis Brownlie8 Domesticating Girls: The Sexual Regulation of Aboriginal and Working-Class Girls in Twentieth-Century Canada / Joan SangsterPart 3: Bodies in Everyday Space: Colonized and Colonizing Women in Canadian Contact Zones9. Aboriginal Women on the Streets of Victoria: Rethinking Transgressive Sexuality during the Colonial Encounter / Jean Barman10. ‘She Was a Ragged Little Thing’: Missionaries, Embodiment and Refashioning Aboriginal Womanhood in Northern Canada / Myra Rutherdale11. Belonging-Out Of Place: Women’s Travelling Stories from the Western Edge / Dianne Newell12. The Old and New on Parade: Mimesis, Queen Victoria, and Carnival Queens on Victoria Day in Inter-War Victoria / Katie PicklesContributorsIndex

University of Washington Press

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