This literary course focuses on contemporary Native American crime fiction. We will start with an overview of Native American literature and look at the traditions and conventions of American crime fiction. We will study innovative structures and styles, different rhythms of tension and release, and focalization and perspectives. Other topics include how Native authors debunk classic racial stereotypes, discuss inter-generational trauma, and depict on-going colonialism.
In this course, students will discover culturally-appropriate and Indigenous-centered resources and frameworks, and learn to apply postcolonial theory to American literary studies. We will confront the reductive stereotypes and ongoing cultural appropriation commonly found in traditional American crime fiction, and explore new diverse voices and perspectives through texts that have historically be confined to the margins.
Léna Remy-Kovach is a Lecturer in French Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Ph.D. candidate in Indigenous Literatures at the University of Freiburg. Léna lives in Wisconsin, on the traditional Ho-Chunk, Kiikaapoi, Ochéthi Šakówi, Sauk, and Meskwaki territories.
- Hoklotubbe, Sara Sue, Deception on All Accounts. University of Arizona Press, 2003. ISBN: 978-0816523115
- LaFavor, Carole, Evil Dead Center: A Mystery. University of Minnesota Press, 2017. ISBN: 978-1517903565
- Rendon, Marcie R., Murder on the Red River. Cinco Puntos Press,2017. ISBN: 978-1941026526
- Weiden, David Heska Wanbli, Winter Counts. Ecco, 2020. ISBN: 978-00629689
For the first session please read the following:
- Arthurson, Wayne. “The State of Indigenous Crime Fiction.” Active Voice, 29 Jun. 2018.
- Stoecklein, Mary. “Introduction: Native Americans and Mystery Writing.” In Native American Mystery Writing: Indigenous Investigations, Lexington Books, 2019. pp. 8-28 of PDF
- Deception on All Accounts, Chapters 1 to 5
- Winter Counts, Chapters 1 to 4
- Evil Dead Center, Chapters 1 to 3
Cost and Registration
Six sessions, $235 ($210 for Newberry members, seniors, and students). Learn about becoming a member.
To register multiple people for this class, please go through the course calendar in Learning Stream, our registration platform. When you select the course and register, you’ll be prompted to add another registrant.Register