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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Familiar and Foreign«

Familiar and Foreign

Mannani, ManijehThompson, Veronica (Hrsg.) | Athabasca University Press


The current political climate of confrontation between Islamist regimes and Western governments has resulted in the proliferation of essentialist perceptions of Iran and Iranians in the West. Such perceptions do not reflect the complex evolution of Iranian identity that occurred in the years following the Constitutional Revolution (1906–11) and the anti-imperialist Islamic Revolution of 1979. Despite the Iranian government’s determined pursuance of anti-Western policies and strict conformity to religious principles, the film and literature of Iran reflect the clash between a nostalgic pride in Persian tradition and an apparent infatuation with a more Eurocentric modernity. In Familiar and Foreign, Mannani and Thompson set out to explore the tensions surrounding the ongoing formulation of Iranian identity by bringing together essays on poetry, novels, memoir, and films. These include both canonical and less widely theorized texts, as well as works of literature written in English by authors living in diaspora.

Challenging neocolonialist stereotypes, these critical excursions into Iranian literature and film reveal the limitations of collective identity as it has been configured within and outside of Iran. Through the examination of works by, among others, the iconic female poet Forugh Farrokhzad, the expatriate author Goli Taraqqi, the controversial memoirist Azar Nafisi, and the graphic novelist Marjane Satrapi, author of Persepolis, this volume engages with the complex and contested discourses of religion, patriarchy, and politics that are the contemporary product of Iran’s long and revolutionary history.

With contributions by Mostafa Abedinifard, William Anselmi, Blake Atwood, Farideh Dayanim Goldin, Babak Elahi, Goulia Ghardashkani, Manijeh Mannani, Laetitia Nanquette, Safaneh Mohaghesh Neyshabouri, Khatereh Sheibani, Veronica Thompson, Madeleine Voegeli, and Sheena Wilson.

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Manijeh Mannani is chair of the Centre for Humanities and associate professor of English and comparative literature at Athabasca University, as well as adjunct professor of comparative literature at the University of Alberta. She specializes in the poetry of Rumi and is the author of Divine Deviants: The Dialectics of Devotion in the Poetry of Donne and Rumi. She is also the co-editor of Selves and Subjectivities: Reflections on Canadian Arts and Culture.

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Veronica Thompson is associate professor of English and dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at Athabasca University. Her research interests include Canadian and Australian literatures, postcolonial literatures and theories, and women’s literature and feminist theory. She is currently researching representations of terrorism in postcolonial literature. She is also the co-editor of Selves and Subjectivities: Reflections on Canadian Arts and Culture.

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »An Ethnohistorian in Rupert’s Land«

An Ethnohistorian in Rupert’s Land

Athabasca University Press


In 1670, the ancient homeland of the Cree and Ojibwe people of Hudson Bay became known to the English entrepreneurs of the Hudson’s Bay Company as Rupert’s Land, after the founder and absentee landlord, Prince Rupert. For four decades, Jennifer S. H. Brown has examined the complex relationships that developed among the newcomers and the Algonquian communities—who hosted and tolerated the fur traders—and later, the missionaries, anthropologists, and others who found their way into Indigenous lives and territories. The eighteen essays gathered in this book explore Brown’s investigations into the surprising range of interactions among Indigenous people and newcomers as they met or observed one another from a distance, and as they competed, compromised, and rejected or adapted to change.

While diverse in their subject matter, the essays have thematic unity in their focus on the old HBC territory and its peoples from the 1600s to the present. More than an anthology, the chapters of An Ethnohistorian in Rupert’s Land provide examples of Brown’s exceptional skill in the close study of texts, including oral documents, images, artifacts, and other cultural expressions. The volume as a whole represents the scholarly evolution of one of the leading ethnohistorians in Canada and the United States.

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"A welcome and compelling selection of articles (some previously published, some unpublished) that focus on the stories of Cree, Ojibwe and Métis peoples, Hudson’s Bay and Northwest Company fur traders, Methodist and Anglican missionaries,and twentieth-century anthropologists. [...] The varied thematic foci of An Ethnohistorian in Rupert’s Land allow readers to delve into topics and issues related to language, family, marriage, women, and Indigenous stories and memories. Each chapter is of interest in its own right, but gathered here each becomes part of a larger narrative of a lifetime of scholarship and contributions by one of the most important practitioners in her field." — Ethnohistory Vol. 65

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Jennifer S. H. Brown taught history at the University of Winnipeg for twenty-eight years and held a Canada Research Chair in Aboriginal history from 2004 to 2011. She served as director of the Centre for Rupert’s Land Studies, which focuses on Aboriginal peoples and the fur trade of the Hudson Bay watershed, from 1996 to 2010. She is the editor of the Rupert’s Land Record Society documentary series (McGill-Queen’s University Press), which publishes original materials on Aboriginal and fur trade history. She now resides in Denver, Colorado, where she continues her scholarly work.

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"My Own Portrait in Writing"

Athabasca University Press | Cultural Dialectics


In Grant’s earlier book, The Letters of Vincent van Gogh. A Critical Study (AU Press, 2014), he followed a practical-critical analysis of the letters that dealt with key patterns of metaphors and concepts. This volume is a complement to the first book and provides an effective, theory-based reading of the letters that brings them more fully and successfully into the domain of modern literary studies. Each chapter addresses some significant aspect of Van Gogh’s writing including a “reading” of the letter-sketches and their narrative dimensions, a deconstruction of the binaries used in Van Gogh’s writing and painting, observations of Van Gogh’s own understanding of the permeable boundary between words and visual art, and a discussion of the set of polarities apparent in Van Gogh’s discussions of imagination, fantasy, belief, and self-surrender. Consequently, as a whole and in each of its parts, this book offers a new, timely, and theoretically-informed interpretation of Van Gogh’s literary achievement.

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"This is an exciting and inspiring book: it is both intellectually ambitious and humanly challenging. Ideally, in my view, it could stimulate an effort to work towards a revised and reinvigorated curriculum with Van Gogh's letters being read alongside some of the writers the great artist most admired."--Garry Watson, author of Opening Doors: Thought From (And Of) the Outside

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"A deep and creative inquiry suggesting meaningful structures for understanding the richness of the artist's life and work. Grant succeeds in bringing Van Gogh's letters into the domain of modern literary studies, and demonstrates that the effort opens exciting new ways of understanding the radical tensions, puzzling transformations, and internal frustrations expressed by the artist in writing, drawing, and painting."University of Toronto Quarterly

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Patrick Grant, professor emeritus of English at the University of Victoria, is best known for his studies on literature and religion. He is the author of Imperfection, which was short-listed for the Canada Prize, and of Literature, Rhetoric, and Violence in Northern Ireland, 1968-98.

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Without Apology«

Without Apology

Stettner, Shannon (Hrsg.) | Athabasca University Press


Until the late 1960s, the authorities on abortion were for the most part men—politicians, clergy, lawyers, physicians, all of whom had an interest in regulating women’s bodies. Even today, when we hear women speak publicly about abortion, the voices are usually those of the leaders of women’s and abortion rights organizations, women who hold political office, and, on occasion, female physicians. We also hear quite frequently from spokeswomen for anti-abortion groups. Rarely, however, do we hear the voices of ordinary women—women whose lives have been in some way touched by abortion. Their thoughts typically owe more to human circumstance than to ideology, and without them, we run the risk of thinking and talking about the issue of abortion only in the abstract.

Without Apology seeks to address this issue by gathering the voices of activists, feminists, and scholars as well as abortion providers and clinic support staff alongside the stories of women whose experience with abortion is more personal. With the particular aim of moving beyond the polarizing rhetoric that has characterized the issue of abortion and reproductive justice for so long, Without Apology is an engrossing and arresting account that will promote both reflection and discussion.

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"Heartbreaking and enraging. . . . A commendable survey of abortion in Canada that gives space to a wide range of voices while also acknowledging the work still to be done." Studies in Social Justice, Vol. 12, Issue 1

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"An excellent example of how Canadian historians can make their scholarship more accessible to a public audience. Stettner's collection shows how the field of women's history can combine scholarly and activist agendas through history. [...] While many of the essays draw on personal and anecdotal evidence, they provide historical insight into how far the pro-choice movement has come in Canada and where it should go next. This book will be useful to academics, women's health practitioners, policymakers, and members of the public who want to understand Canada's abortion debate in the past and in the present."

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Shannon Stettner teaches in the Department of Women’s Studies at the University of Waterloo. She is the co-founder of the Reproductive Activism and Abortion Research Network.

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Reading Vincent van Gogh«

Reading Vincent van Gogh

Athabasca University Press


Soon after his death, Vincent van Gogh’s reputation grew and developed through the remarkably symbiotic relationship evident between his paintings and letters. However, the sheer bulk and complexity of Van Gogh’s complete surviving correspondence presents a formidable challenge to those who wish to read and analyze the whole text as a literary work.

Reading Vincent van Gogh is at once an interpretive guide to Van Gogh’s letters and a distillation of the key themes that reoccur throughout his collected letters—foremost among them the motifs of suffering, love, imagination, and the ineffable. In this indispensable, synoptic view of the letters, Patrick Grant makes the main lines of Vincent van Gogh’s thinking accessible and displays the arresting vividness of the well-known artist’s writing.

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Patrick Grant, professor emeritus of English at the University of Victoria, is best known for his studies on literature and religion. He is the author, most recently, of two other criticisms of Van Gogh's letters, The Letters of Vincent van Gogh (2014) and My Own Portrait in Writing (2015).

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Living on the Land«

Living on the Land

Kermoal, NathalieAltamirano-Jiménez, Isabel (Hrsg.) | Athabasca University Press


An extensive body of literature on Indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing has been written since the 1980s. This research has for the most part been conducted by scholars operating within Western epistemological frameworks that tend not only to deny the subjectivity of knowledge but also to privilege masculine authority. As a result, the information gathered predominantly reflects the types of knowledge traditionally held by men, yielding a perspective that is at once gendered and incomplete. Even those academics, communities, and governments interested in consulting with Indigenous peoples for the purposes of planning, monitoring, and managing land use have largely ignored the knowledge traditionally produced, preserved, and transmitted by Indigenous women. While this omission reflects patriarchal assumptions, it may also be the result of the reductionist tendencies of researchers, who have attempted to organize Indigenous knowledge so as to align it with Western scientific categories, and of policy makers, who have sought to deploy such knowledge in the service of external priorities. Such efforts to apply Indigenous knowledge have had the effect of abstracting this knowledge from place as well as from the world view and community—and by extension the gender—to which it is inextricably connected.

Living on the Land examines how patriarchy, gender, and colonialism have shaped the experiences of Indigenous women as both knowers and producers of knowledge. From a variety of methodological perspectives, contributors to the volume explore the nature and scope of Indigenous women’s knowledge, its rootedness in relationships both human and spiritual, and its inseparability from land and landscape. From the reconstruction of cultural and ecological heritage by Naskapi women in Québec to the medical expertise of Métis women in western Canada to the mapping and securing of land rights in Nicaragua, Living on the Land focuses on the integral role of women as stewards of the land and governors of the community. Together, these contributions point to a distinctive set of challenges and possibilities for Indigenous women and their communities.

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Nathalie Kermoal is of Breton descent (a people whose territory is situated on the West coast of France). She is a professor as well as the Associate Dean Academic at the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta. She is a bilingual specialist (French and English) in Canadian history and more specifically in Métis history.

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Isabel Altamirano-Jiménez is Zapotec from Oaxaca, Mexico. She holds a joint appointment as an associate professor in the Department of Political Science and an adjunct professor in the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta.

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Interrogating Motherhood«

Interrogating Motherhood

Athabasca University Press | OPEL (Open Paths to Enriched Learning)


It has been four decades since the publication of Adrienne Rich’s Of Woman Born but her analysis of maternity and the archetypal Mother remains a powerful critique, as relevant today as it was at the time of writing. It was Rich who first defined the term “motherhood” as referent to a patriarchal institution that was male-defined, male controlled, and oppressive to women. To empower women, Rich proposed the use of the word “mothering”: a word intended to be female-defined. It is between these two ideas—that of a patriarchal history and a feminist future—that the introductory text, Interrogating Motherhood, begins.

Ross explores the topic of mothering from the perspective of Western society and encourages students and readers to identify and critique the historical, social, and political contexts in which mothers are understood. By examining popular culture, employment, public policy, poverty, “other” mothers, and mental health, Interrogating Motherhood describes the fluid and shifting nature of the practice of mothering and the complex realities that definecontemporary women’s lives.

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“Ross provides a comprehensive take on the state of contemporary motherhood in the western world. The book examines the social, political, and economic conditions that influence the ways women - and, to a lesser degree, men - mother. She organizes the book around three themes: the dominant discourses on motherhood; the ways public factors shape private practices of mothering; and the negotiations contemporary women must make to mother. The book is clearly written and organized and gives readers an up-to-date accounting of contemporary motherhood.”

—Feminist Media Studies

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Lynda R. Ross is professor of women’s and gender studies, and chair of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies at Athabasca University. She has a doctorate degree in psychology from the University of New Brunswick. Her research focuses on the social construction of theory and disorder, attachment, and motherhood.

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »The Wolves at My Shadow«

The Wolves at My Shadow

Stahl Listort, DarilynListort, Dennis (Hrsg.) | Athabasca University Press | Our Lives


Ingelore Rothschild was twelve years old when she was whisked out of her home in 1936. It was her first step on a cross-continent journey to Japan, where she and her parents sought refuge from rising anti-Semitism in Nazi Germany. A decade later, as she sails away from what has become her home in Kobe, Japan, Ingelore records her memories of life in Berlin, the long train journey through Russia, and her time in Japan during World War II.

Each leg of the journey presents its own nightmare: passports are stolen, identities are uncovered, a mudslide tears through the Rothschild’s home, and the atomic bombs are dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Ingelore’s bright, observant nature and remarkable capacity for befriending those along her way fills her narrative with unique details about the people she meets and the places she travels to.

The story of Ingelore and her prominent German Jewish family’s escape is an invaluable account that contributes to Holocaust witness and memoir literature. Although she was forever marked by her traumatic past, Ingelore’s survival story is a painful reminder that only European Jews with significant financial means were able to carefully orchestrate an escape from Nazi Germany.

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Darilyn Stahl Listort, daughter of Ingelore Rothschild, is a retired public school teacher, counsellor, and school administrator.

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Dennis Listort is a retired public school teacher and administrator. A poet and a freelance writer, his work has appeared in magazines and newspapers. He is the author of The Writing Box, a work of adult contemporary fiction.

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Sharing Breath

Batacharya, SheilaWong, Yuk-Lin Renita (Hrsg.) | Athabasca University Press


Treating bodies as more than discursive in social research can feel out of place in academia. As a result, embodiment studies remain on the outside of academic knowledge construction and critical scholarship. However, embodiment scholars suggest that investigations into the profound division created by privileging the mind-intellect over the body-spirit are integral to the project of decolonization.

The field of embodiment theorizes bodies as knowledgeable in ways that include but are not solely cognitive. The contributors to this collection suggest developing embodied ways of teaching, learning, and knowing through embodied experiences such as yoga, mindfulness, illness, and trauma. Although the contributors challenge Western educational frameworks from within and beyond academic settings, they also acknowledge and draw attention to the incommensurability between decolonization and aspects of social justice projects in education. By addressing this tension ethically and deliberately, the contributors engage thoughtfully with decolonization and make a substantial, and sometimes unsettling, contribution to critical studies in education.

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“An extremely refreshing book in what is considered curriculum studies. […] Squarely situated in a Canadian context where the decolonization struggles of Indigenous people in Canada is the primary source of political, social, economic, and cultural injustice, the book is nonetheless theoretically and empirically rich enough to inform studies of embodiment in North America more broadly.”—Wayne Yang, University of California San Diego

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Sheila Batacharya completed her doctoral studies at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto. She has taught education, women’s and gender studies, criminology and sociology courses at several colleges and universities in southern Ontario. Sheila’s scholarship in embodiment and embodied learning is fueled by her experiences teaching yoga and her curiosity and concern with articulating and practicing attunement to social-sentient embodied experiences in formal education and community contexts.

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Yuk-Lin Renita Wong is an associate professor at the School of Social Work at York University. Her scholarship and teaching aim at deconstructing the colonial, racial, and gender power relations in the knowledge production and discursive practices of social work, and in re-centering marginalized ways of knowing and being. Mindfulness and social justice are inseparable in Renita's practice in and outside of the academy.

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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »My Decade at Old Sun, My Lifetime of Hell«

My Decade at Old Sun, My Lifetime of Hell

Athabasca University Press | Our Lives: Diary, Memoir, and Letters


Arthur Bear Chief suffered both sexual and psychological abuse during his time at Old Sun Residential school in Gleichen on the Siksika Nation. My Decade at Old Sun, My Lifetime of Hell is a of chronological vignettes that depict the punishment, cruelty, and injustice that Arthur endured at Old Sun and then later relived in the traumatic process of retelling his story in connection with a complicated claims procedure.

Late in life, after working for both the provincial and federal government, Arthur returned home to Gleichen. It was there that he began to reconnect with Blackfoot language and culture and to write his story.

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“A courageous memoir and a must-read for everyone brave enough to learn about residential schools. It’s a tough read—triggering and horrific—but it is also laced with light and the power of culture, language, family, traditions, and learning to trust and try again. It is a life’s work and one to be proud of.”—Richard Van Camp, author of Night Moves

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“In straightforward prose, Arthur Bear Chief testifies to his years in an Alberta residential school and the painful legacy it imprinted on him and his loved ones. With both humour and heartbreak he calls out his abusers, the harsh reality of the claims process, and his own internalized racism. Bear Chief also speaks with pride and hope when he tells of his efforts to reclaim his Blackfoot language and culture and heal from his traumas for the sake of his grandchildren. It is important for Canadians to bear witness to all these stories of survival.”

— Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail, editor of In This Together: Fifteen Stories of Truth and Reconciliation

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"There is nothing more compelling in the work of truth and reconciliation than hearing the first hand voices of those who lost their childhoods growing up in Canada's residential schools. Arthur Bear Chief's voice has just been added to that list...raw, graphic, and compelling. No two residential school survivor stories are the same, each one bringing us to a deeper understanding of our country and our past failings. Reading this will help you consider our present-day responsibilities and our collective opportunities to set things right."---Dr. Marie Wilson, Commissioner, Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, 2009-2015

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"... a remarkable example of Indigenous storytelling and proof of the lingering psychological damage of residential schools on their survivors. . . . These [the appendixes] push conversations concerning residential schools into several arenas, offering readers a more complete view of the schools' operations and legacy than previously published."Center for Great Plains Studies

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Arthur Bear Chief left Old Sun Residential School at the age of

seventeen. He worked

at Shingwauk Indian Residential

School as a student counsellor, before embarking on a career

with the government, which

included work with the Public

Service Commission of Canada in

Edmonton and Northern Affairs

in Ottawa. He now lives on

Siksika Nation.

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