The New Sun Conference By Alethea Arnquq Baril Essay

2050 Words Mar 6th, 2016 null Page
The New Sun conference was interesting to me for a variety of reason, the most important of which was that it humanised issues that in my personal experience I have only heard in passing. It gave these issues of cultural appropriation and identity struggle a human face. It is so easy in this world to ignore harsh truths that do not directly affect your own experience, but this conference shone a light on those truths.
Alethea Arnquq-Baril’s presentation her passion for storytelling through film was very interesting. As an art historian, I couldn’t help but be reminded of art historic definitions of modernity and it’s the problematic idea of primitivism that was inherent in it. I was reminded of this because Arnaquq-Baril’s work reminded me of the notion of salvage anthropology in the 20th century. Anthropologists felt that native culture and native traditions were dying out. As a result, there a rush to record these traditions and ways of life before they became extinct. What struck me as ironic was the fact that the same people who rushed out to record these traditions came from the part of the world that had worked so hard to eradicate that which they were trying to save. They claimed it was preservation because of evolution but in truth it was preservation because of eradication through colonialism and Christianisation. What was amazing about Arnaquq-Baril’s work is that it turned this notion around on its head. It was a First Nations person trying to recover her own…

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