Vol. VIII, No. 2                             February 1991

"A mental faculty like my mother's is called seataka. A person gifted with the virtue of seatka is very intelligent, always on the Divine side in dealings and performance, with a lovely personality.
                                                          --Refugio Savala
                          in An Autobiography of a Yaqui Poet


Association News                               Page 1
Books & Articles                                Page 1
Calls                                                    Page 3
Gatherings                                          Page 6
By-laws Recommendations               Page 7
By-laws Ballot Form                        Page 12


is published three times a year for the Association for the Study of American Indian Literatures with assistance from Central Oregon Community College. Deadlines for submissions of material are October 15, January 15 and May 15. All news-worthy materials or subscription fees should be sent to:

                                    John Purdy
                                    Humanities Department
                                    Central Oregon Community College
                                    2600 NW College Way
                                    Bend, OR 97701

Association News

At the annual business meeting, it was decided that the proposed by-laws for the association should be submitted to the membership for a vote. Hence, this issue of "Notes" will include the by-laws, and a ballot for you to use in voicing your acceptance or rejection of them. Please read them, vote, and send your ballot--by 1 March--to:
Franchot Ballinger
Mail Location 205
University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, OH 45221.


Books and Articles

Circle of Motion, edited by Kathleen Sands, is an Arizona anthology of contemporary American Indian literatures published in 1990 by the Arizona Historical Foundation at Arizona State University.

In Mad Love and War, a collection of poetry by Joy Harjo, was released last year from Wesleyan Press.

Native Latin American Cultures Through Their Discourse, edited by Ellen Basso, is a collection of essays that "work closely with verbal materials, primarily narrative and ceremonial texts, in probing the relationship between verbal art and its cultural surroundings in various native Latin American communities." It was published by the Folklore Institute, 504 {2} North Fess, Bloomington, Indiana 47405.

The University of Manitoba's Linguistics Department has a graduate program that is producing new scholars, and a number of interesting books in Algonquian and Iroquoian linguistics: kiskinaha-mawâkan-âcimowinias/ Student Stories (Written in Plains Cree by Cree-speaking students, edited, translated and with a glossary by Freda Ahenakew, 1986); pisiskiwak kâ-pîkiskwêcik/ Talking Animals (Told in Swampy Cree by L. Beardy, edited and translated by H.C. Wolfart 1988); John Nichol's The Dog's Children: Anishinaabe Texts Told by Angeline Williams (recorded and first edited by Leonard Bloomfield); and Lorna MacDonald's Grammar of Tauya (to be released soon by Mouton de Gruyter). Orders should be sent to Voices of Rupert's Land, c/o Linguistics Department at the University, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3T 2N2 Canada.

Gluskabe Stories is an 80 minute audio cassette of Abenaki storytelling by Joe Bruchac released by Yellow Moon Press last year, and it has won the 1990 Parents Choice Honor for Audio Recording.

There are also some new and recent titles from the University of Nebraska Press. Winged Words: American Indian Writers Speak, edited by Laura Coltelli. Traditional Narratives of the Arikara Indians, by Douglas R. Parks. (Stories of Alfred Morsette, Volume 1; Stories of Other Narrators, Volume 2.). Wolverine Myths and Visions: Dene Traditions from Northern Alberta, by Patrick J. Moore and Angela Wheelock. Coyote Stories by Mourning Dove. And Mourning Dove: A Salishan Autobiography, edited by Jay Miller.


Gretchen M. Bataille and Kathleen M. Sands. American Indian Women: A Guide to Research. Garland, 1991. "This is an extensive annotated bibliography on American Indian women which includes general reference works and ethnographies as well as spe-{3}cific books and articles on Indian women and politics, law, health, education, biography and non-print media." (Please note a related call for contributors in the "Calls" section.)

Talking Leaves, an anthology of Native American short fiction, edited by Craig Lesley, is expected out from Dell in September.

Indi'n Humor: Bicultural Play in Native America (Oxford University Press, Spring 1991), is by Kenneth Lincoln. The book "crosses disciplines and challenges wooden 'Indian' stereotypes of Native Americans. . . . The analyses draw primarily from history, psychology, folklore, linguistics anthropology and the arts in an attempt to redefine negative attitudes and humorless approaches to Native American peoples. The study comes to focus comically on the poets, visual artists, playwrights, and novelists who make up the cultural renaissance of the past twenty years."

John Rollin Ridge: His Life and Works, by James W. Parins; Life Lived Like a Story: Life Stories of Three Yukon Native Elders, by Julie Cruikshank in collaboration with Angela Sidney, Kitty Smith, and Annie Ned; and The Lightning Within, an anthology of American Indian fiction since House Made of Dawn, edited by Alan R. Velie, are all due for release this Spring from the University of Nebraska Press.

Greg Young-Ing, manager of Theytus Books Ltd. announces the release of a new catalog listing numerous fine books (fiction, poetry, ethnography) published by the press, future plans to increase the number of titles produced each year, and expansion into international markets. For those unfamiliar with Theytus, it "is an Indian owned and controlled book publishing house which has been in operation since 1981, based out of the En'owkin Centre. . . ." The centre also houses The Internation School of Writing, directed by Jeannette Armstrong, and the journal Gatherings. (See "Calls" section.) For a copy of the catalog or for {4} a subscription to the journal, write to him at P.O. Box 218, Penticton, B.C., V2A 6K3, Canada.



The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has awarded the University of Arizona Press a $12,000 minority internship grant in publishing. The grant will sponsor Edison Cassadore of San Carlos for a one-year internship at the Press. He will work primarily in the editorial department for the year, and one of his tasks will be to compile an anthology of Apache literature: "the first of its kind for Apache literature and will both preserve and convey the Apache voice and spirit." I am sure we wish him the best of luck, and look forward to the completion of his collection.



Wanted for a proposed anthology: previously unpublished essays on how Native American oral traditions have portrayed cultural contact, past and present, between Native Americans and Europeans, between Native Americans and Afro-Americans, etc. Papers examining specific myths or other stories (especially newly collected texts) are particularly welcome.
        Send completed papers (MLA citation style), SASE, SAS postcard (for acknowledgement) by May 31, 1991 to:
Franchot Ballinger
Mail Location 205

University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, OH 45221.

Gatherings: The Enowkin Journal of First North American Peoples calls for submissions of unpublished poetry, short fiction, songs, oratory, pictograph writing, drama, criticism, biography, artworks, and cartoons for its issue, Two Faces: "A literary force to umask the faces of our divided Nations. Boundaries of cultural and physical genocide compels us to wear two faces. One face masking the other. Two Faces seeks to remove the mask." The deadline for submissions is March 30, 1991; for information, write En'owkin Centre, 257 Brunswick Street, Penticton, B.C. V2A 5P9, Canada.

Series editors Arnold Krupat and Brian Swann announce the Smithsonian Series of Studies in Native American Literatures. "Defining 'literature in the broadest sense, [the Series] seeks to provide a center for this new interdiscipline. The Series will publish scholarly and critical essays of distinction on the literary cultures of indigenous peoples, as well as lively writing whose concerns and modes of presentation do not generally fall within the usual scholarly bounds. . . . The Series Editors welcome suggestions for further projects. The first volume will appear in Fall 1992 . . . All royalties from the Series publications will be donated to Native American rights and education funds. Correspondence may be directed to Daniel Goodwin, Editorial Director, Smithsonian Institution Press, 470 L'Enfant Plaza, Suite 7100, Washington, DC 20560.

Native American Women: A Biographical Dictionary will be published in 1992 by Garland. Gretchen M. Bataille is seeking contributors willing to write brief biographical entries. For a list of entries yet to be assigned, write to her at: Liberal Arts and Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-1701.

Papers are wanted for a session at next years MLA Convention, the title of which is "'Authenticity' and Authorship; Tracking Signs in Native American Texts." "Using spe-{6}cific written literary texts, our panel will explore the qualities and characteristics that have come to exemplify and/or define contemporary American Indian literatures. Prospective panelists should submit abstracts or papers by March 15, 1991, to: John Purdy, Central Oregon Community College, 2600 College Way, Bend, OR 97701.

Poems are needed for a special issue of Poetry East devoted to Native American poetry; please send submissions to Gary Smith, Department of English, De Paul University, 802 West Belden Ave. Chicago, Illinois 60614-3214. The deadline is March 1, 1991.



The Nineteenth Annual Conference of the National Association for Ethnic Studies, Inc-- Ethnic Studies for the Twenty-First Century--will be held from March 7-March 10, 1991 at the Kellogg West Conference Center, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. For information, call Dr. James H. Williams (714) 869-3946.

The details have been worked out for Returning the Gift: A Festival of North American Native Writers. It will be held from July 8th-11th, 1992 at the Oklahoma Center for Continuing Education, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma. Barbra Hobson is Project Coordinator (405) 329-7729.

A SAIL By-laws Recommendations

                ASAIL January 4, 1991

I. Name of the organization. The name of the organization shall be The Association for the Study of American Indian Literatures.

II. Purpose. The purpose of the organization shall be to promote study, criticism, and research on the oral traditions arid written literatures of Native Americans; to promote the teaching of such traditions and literatures; and to support and encourage contemporary Native American writers and the continuity of Native oral traditions.

III. Membership. There shall be three categories of membership. The dues within each category shall be established by the Executive Committee following consultation with association members at a business meeting.
     A. Regular membership. Educators professionally interested in the above-stated purpose of the organization or persons otherwise active in furthering such goals may become regular members of the association.
     B. Limited income membership). Persons retired from professions relevant to the above-stated purpose and Native American writers may apply for membership in this category. Also, graduate students engaged in courses of study in Native American oral tradition or writing may for a maximum of tour years become member at this level, provided they do not hold full-time teaching positions.
     C. Patron. Persons who contribute at higher financial level than required for regular membership may join the association at this level.
     D. Honorary membership. Honorary membership may be granted to distinguished persons of letters and scholars of any nationality upon nomination by the Executive Committee and election by the mem-{8}bership at an association business meeting.
     E. Only members in good standing may hold office in the assciation and vote in association elections and meetings.
IV. Officers--Responsibilities
     A. The officers of the association shall be a president, a vice-president, a secretary and a treasurer.
     B. With the advice of the Executive Committee, the president shall administer the affairs of the association. The president shall preside at meetings of the Executive Committee and at associate business meetings. Also, the president shall communicate regularly with members through the association Journal concerning association business.
     C. The vice-president shall preside at all Executive Committee meetings and business meetings from which the president must be absent. In addition, the vice-president shall assume presidential administrative duties when so requested by the president and the Executive Committee and shall serve as liaison with other organizations whose professional purposes correspond to ASAIL's.
     D. The secretary shall record the minutes of Executive Committee meetings and of membership business meetings. A summary of business meeting minutes shall be published in the association journal as soon as feasible following each meeting. The secretary shall also preserve minutes of all meetings for five years and shall pass these on to the succeeding secretary.
     E. The treasurer shall collect and manage association funds (including keeping accurate and current records of association income, assets, and expenses) so as to further association goals. As major instruments for achieving these goals, the association journal and newsletter shall receive priority in the expenditure of association funds. In addition, the treasurer shall maintain accurate and current membership lists and shall answer all queries regarding membership. The treasurer shall also make financial reports at Executive Committee meetings and at association business meetings. The association financial rec-{9}ords shall be available to the Executive Committee upon request.
V. Officers--Election
     A. Officers shall be elected from among current membership.
     B. The slate of nominees for election shall be prepared by the Election Committee prior to the association's annual business meeting at the Modern Language Association convention.
     C. Election of officers shall be by secret ballot at the annual business meeting during the Modern Language Association convention. However, in unusual and compelling circumstances, the Executive Committee may, with the approval of the members present at this meeting, choose to conduct the election by mail ballot.
     D. Terms and Sequence of Elections
          1. The initial election officers shall be conducted as follows: In December, 1991, the president and the treasurer shall be elected to two year terms; the vice-president and the secretary shall be elected to one year terms.
          2. Beginning with the elections of officers in December, 1992, the election sequence shall be as follows: The president and the treasurer shall be elected to two year terms in odd-numbered years; the vice-president and the secretary shall be elected to two year terms in even-numbered years.
     E. Neither the president nor the vice-president may be elected to consecutive terms.
VI. Executive Committee
     A. The Executive Committee shall meet as often as feasible to conduct association business. In any event, the Committee shall meet at least once a year at the Modern Language Association convention and once prior to the business meeting at the association's own convention, if any.
     B. The membership of the Executive Committee shall include the president, the vice-president, the secretary, the treasurer, the editor of the association journal, and the editor of the association newsletter.
C. The responsibilities of the Committee shall be:
          1. to further the goals of the organization;
          2. to initiate and supervise the services of the association;
          3. to approve the budget of he association and to supervise its expenditure and to act on proposals regarding dues structure and subscription rates for publications;
          4. to make recommendations to the membership, to act on recommendations by members, and to inform members of actions taken;
          5. to establish and discharge committees, either on recommendation of the membership or on its own lnitiative, and to designate their chairs;
          6. to oversee publications and other media of the association, including appointing, assisting, and advising the editors of the association journal and the association newsletter;
          7. to plan conventions and other meetings of the association.
VII. Association Meetings
     A. The association shall hold business meetings during its own convention, if any, and during the annual Modern Language Association convention.
     B. The association shall hold conventions at times and places determined by the Executive Committee. In an emergency, the Executive Committee shall have the power to cancel a convention.
     C. Conventions shall be planned by the Executive Committee with the advice of a program committee appointed by the Executive Committee.
     D. Association sessions at the annual Modern Language Association convention shall be planned by session chairs appointed by the Executive Committee.
VIII. Amendments
     A. Proposals for amendments to these by-laws may be initiated by the Executive Committee or by any association member.
     B. All amendments to be brought before the membership shall be published in the association newsletter at least ninety days before the business meeting at which they are to be voted on or mailed to members at least thirty days before the business meeting.
     C. Amendments must be approved by a majority of those voting at the business meeting. With the approval of those present at such a meeting, the Executive Committee may choose to conduct the voting among the entire membership {11} by mail.
IX. Dissolution
     A. The association may be dissolved only by a vote of the members present at a special meeting called for that purpose.
     B. On the dissolution of the association, all property remaining after the satisfaction of the association's obligations shall be distributed as the Executive Committee directs, choosing the recipients from non-profit Native American educational institutions whose goals are consistent with the interests of the association.

N.B. At the 12/29/90 business meeting, the membership directed the officers to proceed with incorporation. If the above document is passed by ASAIL members, the officers shall take such acceptance as authority to add to the by-laws immediately (without recourse to the above amending procedure) such language as incorporation may require.




I have read the by-laws as

proposed, and cast my vote.




Franchot Ballinger
Mail Location 205
University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, OH 45221