Archaeology

Disturbing Indians: The Archaeology of Southern Fiction - download pdf or read online

By Annette Trefzer

How Faulkner, Welty, Lytle, and Gordon reimagined and reconstructed the local American prior of their work.In this booklet, Annette Trefzer argues that not just have local american citizens performed an energetic position within the development of the South’s cultural landscape—despite a background of colonization, dispossession, and elimination geared toward rendering them invisible—but that their under-examined presence in southern literature presents a vital street for a post-regional realizing of the yank south. William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Andrew Lytle, and Caroline Gordon created works concerning the Spanish conquest of the recent global, the Cherokee frontier in the course of the Revolution, the growth into the Mississippi Territory, and the slaveholding societies of the yankee southeast. They wrote a hundred years after the forceful elimination of local americans from the southeast yet regularly again to the assumption of an —Indian frontier,— each one articulating a special imaginative and prescient and discourse approximately local Americans—wholesome and natural within the imaginative and prescient of a few, symptomatic of hybridity and universality for others. Trefzer contends that those writers interact in a double discourse concerning the area and kingdom: fabricating nearby id through invoking the South’s "native" background and pointing to problems with nationwide guilt, colonization, westward growth, and imperialism in a interval that observed the U.S. sphere of impression widen dramatically. In either instances, the —Indian— indicates neighborhood and nationwide self-definitions and contributes to the shaping of cultural, racial, and nationwide "others." Trefzer employs the belief of archeology in senses: really actually the excavation of artifacts within the South in the course of the New Deal management of the Thirties (a surfacing of fabric tradition to which every author replied) and archeology as a mode for exploring texts she addresses (literary digs into the textual strata of America’s literature and its cultural history).

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Have become decadent colonial hybrids. Like Lytle, Faulkner uses the Indian signi¤er in some of his stories to critique the capitalist underpinnings of American civilization by recirculating the discourse of cannibalism (as in “Red Leaves”), but like Welty, Faulkner forsakes historical transparency for multi-layered irony as he rehearses discourses of Manifest Destiny. Through the Postcolonial Lens Excavating Native American presences in southern texts results in an intervention not only in existing literary and critical discourses but also in both canoni- 24 excavating the sites cal and theoretical work.

Here he also found origin stories that told of a rich and thriving native culture, a deep spirituality, and a cosmological order full of mystery and beauty.

34 colonialism and cannibalism Lytle achieves this critique of empire through the Native American signi¤er in Alchemy and At the Moon’s Inn. The pre-industrial Indian ¤gure—though anchored in Lytle’s regional agenda, as critics have pointed out—is discursively part of the national movement of anti-industrial modernism and an increasingly widespread global anti-imperial attitude. Native Americans are doubleedged signi¤ers in Lytle’s texts: they provide at once a strategy for regionalist identi¤cation and global imperial critique.

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