Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Native American Perceptions of the Other in Louis Owens’ Wolfsong


Louis Owens’ widely-discussed novel Wolfsong (1991) illustrates both the homecoming nature of Native fiction, and an eco-conscious world view which exists in opposition to the view of the white community and westernised Indians.  At the opening of the novel, a road crew is carving a new route through the temperate rainforests in the Cascade mountains of western Washington state.  The land has been designated a wilderness area[i], but government authorities have recently granted permission for the construction of an open-pit copper mine.  From the cover of the trees above the road crew, Jim Joseph makes a one-man protest, shooting at the bulldozers to disrupt their progress.