Women and Gender Seminar: Andrea Robertson Cremer, Macalester College

Friday, March 20, 2009

3:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Women and Gender Seminar

“Indian Women’s Captivity Narratives: An Exercise in Historical Inversion”
Andrea Robertson Cremer, Macalester College
Captivity—as experienced by both European colonists and Native Americans—depended on the dissolution of family systems throughout North America. The structure of English colonization in New England relied on the stability of a social covenant based upon a gendered, familial hierarchy. Similarly, the Native Americans of southern New England employed political structures tied directly to kinship. The encounters and conflicts of these political and social systems reveals that differences in the treatment of Indian servants and Anglo-American servants in New England set a precedent for the organization of labor and social status along gendered and racial lines.

Commentator: Dawn G. Marsh, Purdue University