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AfriGeneas Writers Forum

Call for Papers on Indianess in the Americas

PUB: black magnolias call for papers on indianess in the americas

Black Magnolias Literary Journal announces this Call to all interested parties to contribute to a special issue on Indianess in the landscape of the Americas to be published in a special winter 2010 issue of Black Magnolias Literary Journal, which is a quarterly that uses poetry, fiction, and prose to examine and celebrate the social, political and aesthetic accomplishments of African and African American peoples with an emphasis on Afro-Mississippians and Afro-Southerners.

This special issue will use literature to explore inter-cultural and inter-regional issues around the idea of indianess. Work by writers engaged with indianess as a citizen of the first world/nation, as a person claiming native ancestry, or as a keeper of the medicine are especially welcome. We also invite work from American Indian Literature / Native American Studies teachers/scholars. Inquiries and submissions by email as a WORD or RTF attachment should be sent with a 50-100 word bio and a permanent mailing address to guest editor Chezia Thompson Cager c/o editor C. Liegh McInnis at and send two hard copies of text with bio and mailing address to Chezia Thompson Cager c/o Maryland Institute College of Art, Department of Language, Literature and Culture, 1300 Mount Royal Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21217 by December 1, 2009. Copyright of all work remains with the authors and selected authors will be asked to sign a form giving the publisher the right to publish his or her work in this particular issue. Payment is one copy of the journal.

This Call acknowledges the historical inaccuracy of the linguistic English designation of Indian, as the people Columbus found trying to navigate to the East. What he found in the Caribbean were the fierce Carib people and other indigenous people with their own names. What first Spanish and then English settlers later discovered were indigenous people in this hemisphere, constituting what we call in English the New World but for which indigenous people had their own names in their own languages. This special issue seeks to show that as the first Americans, Indians were the original inhabitants of the New World with evolved confederacies, a high culture, and written laws: and that their adoption/inclusion of Africans who came here before the Atlantic Slave Trade and after, constitute the first real egalitarian governed societies in the New World. A renown Native American Studies scholar says, the origin of the term Indian for indigenous people in this hemisphere is up to debate and frankly George Carlin's riff on it una gente en dios being collided into Indios is a good a guess as any.

Please submit, poems, stories, chants, songs, flash-fiction, articles analyzing Native American writing or critiquing their critics, and literary bibliographies for specific classes as well as film reviews to this issue of Black Magnolias Literary Journal that wants to broaden the defining discussion of the nature of indianess and how we identify it in ways other than, in Gerald Vizenor’s words, the racist arithmeticthat marks the English (or Spanish) accountability for both recording who was and who can be an Indian, as well as defining the cultural parameters of Indian behavior. We are particularly interested in the work and unsung voices of Black Indians. This special issue is meant to be a re-discovery of the language of indianess” – so that literary works in indigenous languages and translated into English will be published together. We are also especially interested in literary work that, in Paula Gunn Allen’s words, helps the reader to “understand how the construction of racial [ethnic] identity is a matter of cultural assumptions based on a number of traditional beliefs: whatever they happen to be - however they happen to work to define indianess.

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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