Vol. XI, No. 1                             October 1993


                       "I see myself, I see the stars,
                        now light and water give me back again
                        the world and heaven in which I live
                        and move and have my being,
                        here where the earth has brought
                        us everything, this day."

           from "When Earth Brings" by Carter Revard


Association News                 Page 2
Publications                          Page 3
Calls                                     Page7
Gatherings                            Page 10
Editor's Note                         Page 10


is published three times a year--on 15 October, 15 February, and 15 May--for the Association for the Study of American Indian Literatures. Publication is funded with membership dues, and with assistance from the Department of English, Western Washington University. Please submit newsworthy materials to:

John Purdy
Department of English
Western Washington University
Bellingham, WA 98225-9055
phone: (206) 650-3243
fax: (206) 650-4837

(Layout and technical support provided by Mark Sherman.)

Association News

The Modern Language Associations annual convention in Toronto in December will be the first for the newly recognized American Indian Literatures division. As reported in the May issue of Notes, there will be a joint business meeting between the new division and A.S.A.I.L. Unfortunately, due to an M..L.A. oversight, the time and place have not yet been released, so those attending the convention will need to pay close attention to the notice boards and/or the "Update" sheets for the Convention Program.

The American Indian Literatures Division and A.S.A.I.L. are offering several panels, as well as a "Cash Bar" and a fiction and poetry reading. They are scheduled as follows:

Tuesday, 28 December:
           12:00-1:15, "Linda Hogan: Calling Herself Home." Conference Room G, Sheraton Centre. (American Indian Literatures Division)
           5:15-6:30  Cash Bar in Honor of A. LaVonne Brown Ruoff. Windsor Room, Sheraton. (A.S.A.I.L.)
           7:15-8:00: "Crossing the Medicine Line: Native North American Migration Stories and Songs of Place." Kenova Room, Sheraton. (A.I.L. Div.)
Wednesday, 29 December:
            12:00-1:15, "Intellectual Property Rights in Native North America: 'Whose Story is This Anyway?'" (A.S.A,I.L.) Peale Room, Sheraton.
            5:15-6:30, Linda Hogan: "Land and Spirit." (A fiction and poetry reading. Other writers will read as well.) Grand Ballroom, Sheraton (Sponsored by A.S.A.I.L. and the A.I.L. Division.)
Thursday, 30 December:
            10:15-11:30, Crossing the Genres: Tricksters, Tropes, and Transformations in Native America. York Room, Sheraton. (A.I.L. Div.)
            1:45-3:00, "Film and Theatre in Native North America." Elgin Room, Sheraton. (A.S.A.I.L.)

And remember: the Business Meeting place and time are to be announced.


Details of 1993 MLA Sessions

                        One of the Two ASAIL Sessions:
Intellectual Property Rights in Native North America: Whose Story is This Anyway?

Presiding: David L. Moore
1. "Native American Ethnobiography and 'Authorship': Legal and Ethical Issues." Lenora Ledwon. Mercer University.
2. "Collaboration and the Complex World of Literary Rights." Alanna Kathleen Brown. Montana State University.
3. "Imagination, Conversation, and Trickster Discourse: Negotiating an Approach to Native American Literature." Paul L. Tidwell. University of New Mexico.
4. "Who Gets to Analyze the Story?: A Winnebago Storyteller's Interpretation of the Trickster." Kathleen Danker. South Dakota State University.

            American Indian Literatures Division Sessions:
Linda Hogan: Calling Herself Home
Presiding: Betty Louise Bell, University of Michigan

1. "Speech, Silence, and Stillness in Linda Hogan's Mean Spirit." Kathryn Shanley. Cornell University.
2. "Going AWOL, Rewriting the Bible, and Other Mutinies: Hogan's Call to Revolution." Kimberly M. Blaeser. University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.
3. "Making Do: Diaspora and Home in Linda Hogan." Peggy Ackerberg. Harvard University.
4. "Looking for Signs: Danger, Dreams, and Broken Earth in Linda Hogan's Mean Spirit." Elizabeth Blair. University of Illinois, Chicago.

                          ASSOCIATION NEWS (cont. on p. 10)


        The University of Arizona Press has released An Eagle Nation, "the first booklength collection of poems by Osage Indian poet Carter Revard. . . . [It] comprises several dozen {4} pieces, some previously published, in which Revard moves easily between cultures, genres, moods, and perspectives." A member of A.S.A.I.L. with long tenure, Carter once again pleases and enlightens. Clothbound volumes of this work are $35, $14.95 for paperback.

        The University of Arizona Press also recently published Luci Tapahonso's Sáanii Dahataal/The Women Are Singing, a rich blend of poetry and prose. This Fall, the Press will also reprint Ruth Murray Underhill's 1938 collection, Singing for Power: The Song Magic of the Papago Indians of Southern Arizona, with a foreword by Ofelia Zepeda. To order, contact the Press at 1230 North Park Avenue Suite 102, Tucson Arizona 85719.

        Gloria Bird's Full Moon on the Reservation is another wonderful addition to the list of recent releases. Published by the Greenfield Review Press (Two Middle Grove Road, Greenfield Center, New York 12833), this collection of poetry won the North American Native Authors First Book Award: The Diane Decorah Award for Poetry.

        Association member Gretchen Bataille has edited Native American Women: A Biographical Dictionary. The entries are comprehensive tellings of each individual's life, providing a wide range of contexts. It has entries on about 250 women, both historical and contemporary, including writers, activists and performers. To order, contact Garland Publishing, 1000A Sherman Ave., Hamden, CT 06514, or call 1-800-627-6273.

        Jim Barnes' most recent book of poetry, The Sawdust War (University of Illinois Press), won the 1993 Oklahoma Book Award. Barnes has also been awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to Switzerland (University of Lausanne) from October 1993 {5} to March 1994. Both are well deserved.

        Neon Powwow: New Native American Voices of the Southwest is a new anthology edited by Anna Lee Walters and published by Northland Publishing of Flagstaff, Arizona.

        Clifford Trafzer has edited a new anthology, as well. Earth Song, Sky Spirit: Short Stories of the Contemporary Native American Experience was released this year by Doubleday/Anchor books.

        Coming To Light: Contemporary Translations of the Native Literatures of North America is a new volume edited by Brian Swann. Divided geographically, the collection is a wealth of texts and insights into the issues surrounding translation; it includes contributions from several A.S.A.I.L. members, such as Jarold Ramsey, Larry Evers, Elaine Jahner and John Bierhorst. Publication by Random House is scheduled for mid-1994.

        Brian Swann also has a collection of poetry due for release from the University of Massachusetts Press in November: Song of the Sky: Versions of Native American Songs and Poems.

        Also released this year, Keeping Slug Woman Alive: A Holistic Approach to American Indian Texts by Greg Sarris is a collection of eight of his previously published articles. It can be ordered from the University of California Press, 2120 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, CA 94720.

        The University of Mississippi Press has published Conversations with Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris, edited by Allan Chavkin and Nancy Feyl Chavkin. This collection {6} includes two previously unpublished, recent interviews. Cloth, $35 and $14.95 paper.

Journals and Newsletters

        Moccasin Telegraph: Newsletter of the Wordcraft Circle of Native American Mentor & Apprentice Writers. This is a fine looking newsletter that contains a wide variety of information, from acknowledgments of birthdays and recent publications, to original pieces of fiction, non-fiction prose, and poetry. in early October the Wordcraft Circle will publish its Quarterly Journal, a collection of work by those in their Mentor program. To subscribe or for more information, write to editor Lee Francis, 2951 Ellenwood Drive, Fairfax, VA 22031-2038.

        "Explorations in Ethnic Studies is an interdisciplinary journal devoted to the study of ethnicity, ethnic groups, intergroup relations, and the cultural life of ethnic peoples." For more information or to subscribe, contact the national office of the National Association for Ethnic Studies, Department of English, Box 870302, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-0302.

        The Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas Newsletter, edited by Victor Golla. This is a very useful newsletter, covering recent publications, conferences, and the ever-popular Media Watch. To subscribe, contact Victor at Department of Ethnic Studies, Humbolt State University, Arcata, CA 95521. (Internet:

        Medium Rare is the newsletter for the Native American Journalists Association. It reports on current events and issues, {7} as well as news related to journalism. To subscribe, write to: Native American Journalists Association, 230 Tenth Avenue South, Suite 305, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55415.

        Turtle Quarterly Magazine, Tim Johnson, Editor-in-chief, and Millie Knapp, Editor, is published four times a year by the Native American Center for the Living Arts Inc. It publishes extensive articles on current issues, book reviews and literary pieces. It accepts "manuscripts and queries from writers and photographers." For more information or to subscribe, contact Turtle Quarterly Magazine, 25 Rainbow Mall, Niagara Falls, NY 14303.


        Jennifer Sergi is organizing the A.S.A.I.L. sessions for the American Literature Association conference in San Diego, June 2-5, 1994. "Papers on all topics are welcome. We hope to offer five sessions, which may include panels, readings, discussion groups, as well as the presentation of papers. Possible session topics include: the criticism and fiction of Louis Owens; critical responses to Silko's Almanac of the Dead; the criticism and fiction of Gerald Vizenor; the American Indian and popular culture. To propose a paper, please send a one-page abstract to Jennifer Sergi, 33 Nisbet Street, Providence, RI 02906. Deadline is January 10, 1994. If you would like to organize a panel or session, please contact Jennifer as soon as possible at (401)831-4315.

        As reported earlier in Notes, Rodney Simard is seeking contributions for a special issue of Studies in American Indian {7} Literatures that will focus on "New Directions in Contemporary Indian Film, Drama, and Theater." For more information, contact Rodney at Department of English, California State University, San Bernardino, CA 92407. (714) 880-5824.

        Brian Swann is poetry editor for Amicus, published by the Natural Resources Defense Council, and he is looking for poems by Native Americans. Submissions should not be more than one page in length, and should be "rooted in Nature." The publication pays $25. Several poets have had works appear in past issues, including Michael Dorris, Ray Young Bear, Jim Barnes, Roberta Hill Whiteman, to name only a few. "Poems can, of course, be political, social, whatever, but must show concern for the land." Copies are available by writing to Beth Hanson, N.R.D.C., 40W. 20th Street, New York, NY 10011.

        From the Moccasin Telegraph (see "Publications"):"The Council Press is a non-profit publishing group. . . . which was founded to create a new body of children's literature for the education of young Native American people. The Press is soliciting stories for early readers (K-3rd), middle elementary, (4th-8th) and young adult (teen). Special emphasis is on stories about modern Indian children. The Council Press is cultivating authors and illustrators from communities throughout Turtle Island. For more information or to submit manuscripts, writers are asked to contact: Carrie Jenkins Williams, The Council Press, 3000 Jefferson Street, Boulder, CO 80304." Also from the Telegraph: "Spirit Talk--a magazine in celebration of Indian culture[s]--is entirely Indian owned and published on a Montana Indian reservation. For submission requirements, please contact: Spirit Talk Press, Postal Drawer V, Browning, MT 59417, (406) 338-2882."

        "The 1994 Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics Essay Contest, with awards totalling $10,000, is open to full-time, senior undergraduates at accredited, United States colleges and universities. Deadline for submitting an original 3,000-4,000 word essay is January 14, 1994. Themes for this year are: 'Identify and Respond to the Most Important Ethical Problems in Government, Professional or Social Life'; 'Identify and Respond to the Ways in which the World's Great Writers Address Contemporary Ethical Dilemmas.' For entry forms and guidelines, write to: The Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics, The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity, 1177 Avenue of the Americas, 36th Floor, New York, NY 10036."

        For the record: In several past issues I have inserted a call for submissions from Native writers for the Anthology of American Indian Literature of the Northwest, edited by Ted Dreier. In the last call, I listed the names of some writers who had ostensibly agreed to help in the production of the anthology. Since that issue, they have withdrawn their support, and I quote from a recent notification regarding that withdrawal: "We, the undersigned members of the Northwest Native American Writers Association, submit this statement disassociating our names, writers' group, and logo from [the anthology]. We neither endorse this project nor condone opportunists who are making professional reputations by taking advantage of Native American writers' reputations, literary excellence, and achievements. . . . Our concerns are for the well-being and unconditional regard for writers in the communities they serve. We are taking this position as a group, by group consensus, but leave it to individuals to contribute to projects they deem worthy by their own standards." It is signed by four of the founding members of the group Elizabeth Woody, Ed Edmo, Gloria Bird and Vincent Wanassay.


The Center of Research on English-Speaking America will hold its annual conference on November 12th and 13th at the Maison des Sciences de l'Homme d'Aquitine, Esplanade des Antilles, Talence, France. Included in the program are two papers on Native writers: Elisabeth Beranger's "Ray A. Young Bear, Black Eagle Child," and Rigal-Cellard's "L'esthétique de Louis Owens dans The Sharpest Sight."

Editor's Note

        This is my first attempt at editing the newsletter from a distance. Since I will return to the States from New Zealand in mid-December, I will edit the second issue of volume 11 as usual, at Western Washington, so I ask that readers who have information about gatherings, recent publications, calls for papers or creative works to please send me a note containing that information by late January. I expect the next issue will be quite larger.


ASSOCIATION NEWS (cont. from p. 3)

Crossing the Genres: Tricksters, Tropes, and Transformations in Native America.
Presiding: Hertha D. Wong, University of California, Berkeley

1. "Reservation Reservations: Alexander Posey's Comic Commentaries on America." John Lowe, Louisiana State University.
2. "Transforming the Self with Trickster Humor: Vizenor's Autobiographical Vision." Kimberly M. Blaeser. University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.
3. "This Woman Can Cross Any Line: Feminist Tricksters in the Words of Nora Naranjo-Morse and Joy Harjo." Kristine Holmes. University of California, Los Angeles.
4. "Trickster, Transformations, and Militancy in Louis Owens' Wolfsong. Chris LaLonde. North Carolina Wesleyan College.