Ecofeminism, Subsistence Living & Nature Awareness

December 6, 2014

Cultural Imperialism Goes Center Stage in the Forum: Issue Five of At The Crossroads

Filed under: — Jeanne Neath @ 4:08 am

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At The Crossroads Issue 5 - Cultural Imperialism Forum

Issue Five of At The Crossroads

Issue Five $6.50 + shipping (U.S. only – International orders please contact us)

Cultural imperialism is, in the simplest terms, the theft of parts of an oppressed people’s culture by the dominating group. Some European Americans, including some feminists, seem to have a fascination with Native American cultures, especially spiritual practices. Issue Five features our forum asking the question: Are European Americans practicing cultural imperialism when they “adopt” Native American spiritual practices or are we moving toward a “Rainbow Tribe”? Five feminist writers give their very different perspectives.
(See several excerpts from the Forum on cultural imperialism below.)

Feature Articles
Darwin’s Glass Slipper: A Feminist Critique of the Theory of Evolution by Sara Rajan
Folger-Geiger UFO Abduction Dialogue Continues with Mariah Folger, Ruth Geiger, and Jeanne Neath
Cultural Assumptions and Perceptions of Reality in Experienced Anomalous Events by Mariah Folger
Questions and Contradictions: A Visit to a Women’s Ashram in India by Shelley Anderson
Hopi and Tantric Clues to the Cretan Labyrinth by Jude Todd

Are European Americans practicing cultural imperialism when they “adopt” Native American spiritual practices or are we moving toward a “Rainbow Tribe”?

Book Reviews
Paula Mariedaughter reviews Blood, Bread, and Roses: How Menstruation Created the World by Judy Grahn
Jeanne Neath reviews Willful Virgin: Essays in Feminism by Marilyn Frye

New Paradigm Science News
Parapsychology in China
Alternative Medicine: Grants, New Journal
It’s Just Routine (Racist) Science

Cultural imperialism goes center stage in the Forum: Excerpts

Myke Johnson:

“Cultural appropriation is a form of racism. Cultural appropriation is the use by a dominating or colonizing people<, in this case Euro-Americans, of cultural and religious ceremonies and articles of a people experiencing domination or colonization, in this case Native Americans. Cultural appropriation is a theft from a people, and also a distortion, a deceit, a lie spread about a people. It is an assault on the cultural integrity of Native people, and ultimately threatens even the survival of Native people."

Patricia Shaw Mathews

“The problem with the Rainbow Tribe idea is that a lot of Anglos have the same attitude toward other cultures that patriarchal males have towards women: “if we want what they have (any we, any they), we therefore have a right to it, and they are being negative and obstructionist not to let us have it and use it freely. After all, we need it!” This is not an attitude any feminist should be associated with.”

Zizi Redwing

Who is to say how much or how little blood provokes a rush toward its origins? “Thinbloods” are also victims of the past. Cut off from their Native heritage through no fault of their own, they are denied access to self-knowledge. Untaught, they can only respond to memory’s reach. Insult joins injury in judging them along with faddists who confuse spiritual connectedness with wearing turquoise and crystals, feathers and medicine bags.
One thing I know of my Cherokee ancestors. They pointed only with a hooked finger, for they realized accusations turn back against the accuser.
The belief that spirituality, like land, can be stolen injures both the Seeker and the Keeper of Old Ways. The Seeker knows she is injured. Suppression steals from her before she can receive. Fear of theft through self-serving distortion prevents the Keeper of Old Ways from fulfilling an obligation.

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