Critical Writing Index

Prophesizing on the Virtual Reservation

by Michelle H. Raheja

Reservation Reelism: Redfacing, Visual Sovereignty, and Representations of Native Americans in Film, 2011, pp. 145-189

Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2011

This chapter from Reservation Reelism provides a case study of two Indigenous films: Imprint (2007) and It Starts with a Whisper (1993). Each deals with the theme of historical amnesia and uses ghostly figures as a means of addressing this trauma. Raheja further emphasizes the importance of spirituality as an enabling tool for combating colonialism and re-engaging Indigenous epistemologies without attempting to explain particular aspects of specific tribal practices or inviting spectators to partake of Indigenous spirituality through commodification and consumption. The article also uses the concept of the "virtual reservation" to demonstrate how the creators of these films utilize that conceit to foreground, contest, and reinvigorate key concepts such as prophecy, chronology, spirituality, and gender.

ITEM 2011.126 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

Videos, Artworks and Artists Cited

It Starts with a WhisperShelley Niro, Anna Gronau

ImprintMichael Linn

Smoke SignalsChris Eyre

Petroglyphs in MotionJames Luna

Navajo Talking PictureArlene Bowman

Deep Inside Clint StarClint Alberta

Helpless Maiden Makes an "I" StatementThirza Cuthand

Imagining IndiansVictor Masayesva Jr

Hózhó of Native WomenBeverly Singer

AnaanaMary Kunuk and Arnait Video Productions

A Spiritual Land ClaimDorothy Christian

Ninguira/My GrandmotherArnait Video Productions

Before TomorrowArnait Video Productions

TenacityChris Eyre

SkinsChris Eyre

SkinwalkersChris Eyre

Edge of AmericaChris Eyre

Thief of TimeChris Eyre

A Thousand RoadsChris Eyre

We Shall RemainPBS

Suite: INDIANShelley Niro

TreeShelley Niro, Lena Recollet