Land and Storytelling: Indigenous Pathways towards Healing, Spiritual Regeneration and Resurgence

Mussi, Francesca (2021) Land and Storytelling: Indigenous Pathways towards Healing, Spiritual Regeneration and Resurgence. The Journal of Commonwealth Literature. ISSN 0021-9894 (In Press)

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This article aims to contribute to discourses of healing, Indigenous resurgence and spiritual regeneration within the context of the Indian Residential School Truth and Reconciliation Commission that took place in Canada between 2008 and 2015. First, it considers to what extent the TRC’s restorative justice process can relate to Indigenous ways of conceptualising healing. Secondly, it reflects on the Commission’s exclusive focus on the Indian Residential School system and its legacies, which, according to many Indigenous scholars, overlooks a much broader and more complex history of colonisation, political domination, and land dispossession still ongoing. I underline that, from an Indigenous perspective, land plays a fundamental role to achieve healing, spiritual regeneration, and resurgence. In the last section, I move the discussion to the literary dimension as I explore Richard Wagamese’s 2012 novel Indian Horse. In particular, I argue that fiction, especially that fiction produced during the years of the Commission’s work, can be a crucial site for challenging the TRC’s restorative process and for bringing out the significance of storytelling and of an Indigenous deep sense of connection to the land as a source of learning, spiritual reclaiming, and healing.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding information: The author disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: The research for this article has been supported by a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellowship held at Northumbria University.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Indian Residential School System, Healing, Regeneration, Resurgence, Land, Storytelling, Richard Wagamese, Indian Horse
Subjects: L900 Others in Social studies
Q200 Comparative Literary studies
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Humanities
Depositing User: John Coen
Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2021 07:51
Last Modified: 15 Oct 2021 17:30

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