Tracing Ochre: Changing Perspectives on the Beothuk

Edited by Fiona Polack

© 2018

The supposed extinction of the Indigenous Beothuk people of Newfoundland in the early nineteenth century is a foundational moment in Canadian history. Increasingly under scrutiny, non-Indigenous perceptions of the Beothuk have had especially dire and far-reaching ramifications for contemporary Indigenous people in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Tracing Ochre reassesses popular beliefs about the Beothuk. Placing the group in global context, Fiona Polack and a diverse collection of contributors juxtapose the history of the Beothuk with the experiences of other Indigenous peoples outside of Canada, including those living in former British colonies as diverse as Tasmania, South Africa, and the islands of the Caribbean. Featuring contributions of Indigenous and non-Indigenous thinkers from a wide range of scholarly and community backgrounds, Tracing Ochre aims to definitively shift established perceptions of a people who were among the first to confront European colonialism in North America.

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Product Details

  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 400 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.0in x 9.0in
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  • PUBLISHED MAY 2018

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    Regular Price: $36.95

    ISBN 9781442628427
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    ISBN 9781442650466
  • AVAILABLE JUN 2018

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Quick Overview

The supposed extinction of the Indigenous Beothuk people of Newfoundland in the first half of the nineteenth century is a foundational moment in Canadian history. In Tracing Ochre, Fiona Polack and a diverse group of contributors interrogate and expand upon changing perceptions of the Beothuk.

Tracing Ochre: Changing Perspectives on the Beothuk

Edited by Fiona Polack

© 2018

The supposed extinction of the Indigenous Beothuk people of Newfoundland in the early nineteenth century is a foundational moment in Canadian history. Increasingly under scrutiny, non-Indigenous perceptions of the Beothuk have had especially dire and far-reaching ramifications for contemporary Indigenous people in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Tracing Ochre reassesses popular beliefs about the Beothuk. Placing the group in global context, Fiona Polack and a diverse collection of contributors juxtapose the history of the Beothuk with the experiences of other Indigenous peoples outside of Canada, including those living in former British colonies as diverse as Tasmania, South Africa, and the islands of the Caribbean. Featuring contributions of Indigenous and non-Indigenous thinkers from a wide range of scholarly and community backgrounds, Tracing Ochre aims to definitively shift established perceptions of a people who were among the first to confront European colonialism in North America.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 400 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.0in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "Tracing Ochre aggressively moves Beothuk studies into the 21st century by expanding out from its safe home in Anthropology and History Departments to engage a broader inter-disciplinary perspective."


    Stephen Loring, Arctic Studies Center, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution

    "Tracing Ochre takes up one of the most complex, controversial, and necessary conversations in Indigenous history in Canada, and does so in ways that challenge readers’ understandings of the continuities and ruptures of Indigenous identities and experiences in a region so often dominated by problematic narratives of Beothuk erasure. It’s a major contribution to Indigenous studies in this country as well as to the cultural and political contexts of Indigenous peoples in Newfoundland and Labrador, noteworthy in particular for its intellectual and ethical commitments alike."


    Daniel Heath Justice (Cherokee Nation), Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Literature and Expressive Culture at the University of British Columbia
  • Author Information

    Fiona Polack is an associate professor in the Department of English at Memorial University.
  • Table of contents

    List of Illustrations and Maps
    Preface
    Introduction: De-islanding the Beothuk
    Fiona Polack

    Part 1: Land, Language and Memory

    1. Good and Bad Indians: Romanticizing the Beothuk and Denigrating the Mi’kmaq
      Maura Hanrahan
    2. When the Beothuk (Won’t) Speak: Michael Crummey’s River Thieves and Bernice Morgan’s Cloud of Bone
      Cynthia Sugars
    3. "The Ones That Were Abused": Thinking About the Beothuk Through Translation
      Elizabeth Penashue and Elizabeth Yeoman
    4. A Clearing with a View to the Lake, the Bones of a Caribou and the Sound of Snow Falling on Dead Leaves: Sensing the Presence of the Past in the Wilds of Newfoundland
      John Harries

    Part 2: Mercenaries, Myths and DNA

    1. Beothuk and Mi’kmaq: An Interiew with Chief Mi’sel Joe
      Chief Mi’sel Joe and Christopher Aylward
    2. The Beothuk and the Myth of Prior Invasions
      Patrick Brantlinger
    3. Bioarchaeology, Bioethics and the Beothuk
      Daryl Pullman

    Part 3: Ways of Knowing

    1. Towards a Beothuk Archaeology: Understanding Indigenous Agency in the Material Record
      Lisa Rankin
    2. Historical Sources and the Beothuk: Questioning Settler Interpretations
      Lianne C. Leddy
    3. Historical Narrative Perspective in Howley and Speck
      Christopher Aylward

    Part 4: Travelling Tales

    1. Santu Toney, a Transnational Beothuk Woman
      Beverley Diamond
    2. Routes of Colonial Racism: Travelling Narratives of European Progress and Aboriginal Extinction in Pre-Confederation Newfoundland
      Jocelyn Thorpe
    3. Unrecognized Peoples and Concepts of Extinction
      Bonita Lawrence
    4. Shanawdithit and Truganini: Converging and Diverging Histories
      Fiona Polack

    Coda: The Recovery of Indigenous Identity
    J. Edward Chamberlin