Tales of Ghosts: First Nations Art in British Columbia, 1922-61 by Ronald W. HawkerTales of Ghosts: First Nations Art in British Columbia, 1922-61 by Ronald W. Hawker

Tales of Ghosts: First Nations Art in British Columbia, 1922-61

byRonald W. Hawker

Paperback | July 1, 2003

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The years between 1922 and 1961, often referred to as the “Dark Ages of Northwest Coast art,” have largely been ignored by art historians, and dismissed as a period of artistic decline. Tales of Ghosts compellingly reclaims this era, arguing that it was instead a critical period during which the art played an important role in public discourses on the status of First Nations people in Canadian society.

Hawker’s insightful examination focuses on the complex functions that Northwest Coast objects, such as the ubiquitous totem pole, played during the period. He demonstrates how these objects asserted the integrity and meaningfulness of First Nations identities, while simultaneously resisting the intent and effects of assimilation enforced by the Canadian government’s denial of land claims, its ban of the potlatch, and its support of assimilationist education.

Those with an interest in First Nations and Canadian history and art history, anthropology, museology, and post-colonial studies will be delighted by the publication of this major contribution to their fields.

Ronald W. Hawker is an assistant professor, Department of Art and Design, Zayed University, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
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Title:Tales of Ghosts: First Nations Art in British Columbia, 1922-61Format:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 8.97 × 5.98 × 0.67 inPublished:July 1, 2003Language:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0774809558

ISBN - 13:9780774809559

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Reviews

Table of Contents

Illustrations

Acknowledgments

1 Introduction

2 The Cranmer Potlatch and Indian Agent Halliday’s Display

3 Totem Poles in Stanley Park

4 Northwest Coast Art as National Heritage: Two Federal Projects of the Late 1920s

5 The New Deals: George Raley and Depression-era Reform in British Columbia

6 Alice Ravenhill and the BCIAWS

7 Mathias Joe, Mungo Martin, and George Clutesi: "Art" as Resistance

8 UBC, the BCPM, and the Totem Pole Carver Training Program

9 The Totem Pole Preservation Committee and the Case of the Gitanyow

10 Tales of Ghosts That Hover in the World Like Fading Smoke

Appendices:

A Map showing First Nations groups in British Columbia

B Chronology of First Nations art in British Columbia, 1921-61

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Editorial Reviews

The years between 1922 and 1961, often referred to as the “Dark Ages of Northwest Coast art,” have largely been ignored by art historians, and dismissed as a period of artistic decline. Tales of Ghosts compellingly reclaims this era, arguing that it was instead a critical period during which the art played an important role in public discourses on the status of First Nations people in Canadian society. Those with an interest in First Nations and Canadian history and art history, anthropology, museology, and post-colonial studies will be delighted by the publication of this major contribution to their fields.Tales of Ghosts addresses a major gap in our understanding of the historical dialogue between Euro-Canadian and First Nations communities and cultures ... It successfully extends current postcolonial debates to Canadian landmarks that are usually taken for granted and that have been overlooked by both anthropologists and art historians. There is no comparable publication on this material. Indeed, there is a great need for studies of this kind in the areas of Canadian historical and cultural studies. - Gerta Moray, Professor of Fine Art, University of Guelph, and author of Unsettled Encounters: The Indian Pictures of Emily Carr