"Spirit of the Past"

"Spirit of the Past"

"The North American Indian"

Date(s)
December 26, 1905
Creator
Edward S. Curtis
Photographer Edward S. Curtis begins creating The North American Indian, a forty-volume edition of photogravures and writings that attempt to illustrate Native American life to the mass public. He is the first to document and cite the phenomenon of a “vanishing race” which contributes to the notion that Native Americans were already absorbed into the national past; implicitly allowing for further American expansion (Egan 2006). While he captured haunting and breathtaking images of Native Americans, Curtis is also accused of catering to a white gaze of “Indianness” by manipulating photos, such as giving the Native Americans props, dressing them in costumes, and fabricating scenes (“Celluloid Savage” 2008).
Sources
“CELLULOID SALVAGE: Edward S. Curtis’s Experiments with Photography and Film”. 2008. “CELLULOID SALVAGE: Edward S. Curtis’s Experiments with Photography and Film”. In Taxidermic Signs: Reconstructing Aboriginality, NED - New edition, 87–128. University of Minnesota Press. http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5749/j.ctttvc3k.6.
Daniels, Valerie. "Edward Curtis: Selling the North American Indian." Edward Curtis: Selling the North American Indian. June 1, 2002. Accessed December 11, 2015. http://xroads.virginia.edu/~ma02/daniels/curtis/promoting.html.
Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. "Land Claims: An Indigenous People's History of the United States." Global Research. October 6, 2015. Accessed December 11, 2015. http://www.globalresearch.ca/land-claims-an-indigenous-peoples-history-of-the-united-states/5480109.
Egan, Shannon. ""Yet in a Primitive Condition": Edward S. Curtis's "North American Indian"" American Art 20.3 (2006): 58-83. JSTOR. Web. 01 Nov. 2015.
"Native American - Conclusion." Loc.gov. Accessed December 11, 2015. http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/immigration/alt/conclusion.html.
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