Hemispheric Visions and Border Divisions: Differential Decolonizations at the US National Museum of the American Indian
Author: Ceseña, Maria Teresa
Source: Comparative American Studies, Volume 11, Number 2, June 2013 , pp. 201-219(19)
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Abstract:While many populations have suffered unique forms of colonial oppression, what these varying populations seem to share is an understanding of the importance of community support and cultural continuity in the face of struggle. Drawing on notions of differential oppositional consciousness and decolonization, this article examines the US National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC in light of its efforts to represent a hemispheric indigeneity. The Our Lives gallery exhibit co-curated by the Campo Band of Kumeyaay Indians (whose aboriginal lands straddle the border between the US and Mexico) is analyzed alongside the author’s personal reflections of her encounters with the NMAI as a US Chicana/Latina subject. The article urges scholars to recognize how they have been differ entially positioned against power and, furthermore, to acknowledge how and when efforts to decolonize may result in the re-colonization of another already marginalized group. This project asserts that the strength of alliances may not always be built on sameness, but perhaps can be built out of differences.
Document Type: Original Article
Affiliations: University of California, San Diego, USA
Publication date: 2013-06-01