English 711: American Ethnic Writers: Leslie Marmon Silko

Prof. Miriam Schacht
E-mail: schacht.uwo@gmail.com (preferred) or schachtm@uwosh.edu
Office: Radford 222
Office Hours: W 2-5


Policies and Assignments

This graduate seminar focuses one of the most significant contemporary Native American authors: Laguna Pueblo author Leslie Marmon Silko. Best known for her 1977 novel Ceremony, Silko is the author of several novels as well as poetry and nonfiction texts. We will read her novels Ceremony, Almanac of the Dead, and Gardens in the Dunes, her mixed-genre work Storyteller, and her book of essays Yellow Woman and a Beauty of the Spirit. In addition to these primary texts, we will be reading critical essays on Silko’s work, and on the study of Native American literature more generally. We will approach these texts as a community of learners and scholars, exploring a range of issues, approaches, and readings. This course is discussion-based, and students will take an active part in shaping class discussions.

Texts by Leslie Marmon Silko
Almanac of the Dead
Gardens in the Dunes
Yellow Woman and a Beauty of the Spirit

Critical texts
Barnett and Thorson, Leslie Marmon Silko: A Collection of Critical Essays
Other essays as assigned

One** of the following books of criticism whose subject and/or methodologies relate to the texts we are reading in this course:
Robert Warrior, The People and the Word: Reading Native Nonfiction.
Craig Womack, Red On Red: Native American Literary Separatism.
Linda Tuhiwai Smith, Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples.
Jace Weaver, That the People Might Live: Native American Literatures and Native American Community.
Joni Adamson, American Indian Literature, Environmental Justice, and Ecocriticism: The Middle Place.
Sean Kicummah Teuton, Red Land, Red Power: Ground Knowledge in the American Indian Novel
James Cox, Muting White Noise: Native American and European American Novel Traditions.
Jeffrey Sissons, First Peoples: Indigenous Cultures and Their Futures
Gayatri Spivak, A Critique of Postcolonial Reason: Toward a History of the Vanishing Present.
Robert Dale Parker, The Invention of Native American Literature.
Taiaiake Alfred, Peace, Power, Righteousness: An Indigenous Manifesto.

**Please note that you are responsible for obtaining a copy of this book. You may order it from the bookstore yourself, request it via Interlibrary Loan, or order it online; plan to order it as soon as you have been assigned the book.

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Updated 29. Jan. 2011