Tonto and Tonto Speak (DGM Module 2-2)

This master’s thesis, submitted to Montana State University by Heather Miller in 2006, outlines the development of a Native American film theory. Inspired by Native American literary theory and relying on Creation Stories, Miller’s film theory attempts to address the issue of Native American identity in film.

For Miller, the four main components of her film theory are:

  1. Community and Cultural Applications;
  2. American Indian Thought;
  3. Indian Semiotics; and
  4. History and Politics

Although not technically a web-site, this thesis does contribute significantly to our understanding both of Native American film and of the ways in which Native American film is produced differently from non-Native American film.


October 14, 2009   No Comments

Module # 2 Weblog # 5

Representation and Participation of First Nations Women in Online Videos

“Online videos have the potential to contribute or create an alternative or Aboriginal public sphere if First Nations women or Indigenous women start developing or creating videos and sites for video sharing that are specific to their concerns.”

This is a paper that was presented at the International Communication Association in 2008 in Montreal, Quebec. Its topic is straightforward and it is a very interesting and topical paper because it deals with First Nations women’s representation in online video, such as Youtube. This can be very intriguing for younger students to hear about due to their interest in Youtube and other streaming video services. There is a critique of the representation of First Nations women in three online videos that is a very engaging read.

I chose to present this paper because I believe that using online videos can help present issues and beliefs in a way that is creative, and also easily created. The potential audience is very high, and without any outside influences the videos can offer an excellent cultural representation that is true to the vision of the author.

October 14, 2009   No Comments

Module # 2 Weblog # 4

Rabbit Fall: Do You Believe?


Rabbit Falls is a new TV show created by Jennifer Podemski, who also produced the drama show Moccasin Flats. This article is a review of the show from the online magazine ResXtra. The review, although found in a CanWest newspaper offers some interesting insight about some of the issues with producing television shows that involve First Nations legends.

“When critics first came out against Moccasin Flats, saying the show didn’t properly portray Regina’s inner city and perpetuated the stereotype that it was, “Canada’s worst neighborhood” – the same could be said for Rabbit Fall.   Visit any First Nation community in Saskatchewan and you’re highly unlikely to find a community like Rabbit Fall.   Furthermore, in First Nation culture, the telling of First Nation oral stories are supposed to be kept sacred or else used only for education and not meant to be told through the mainstream.  So with that said, is Rabbit Fall stepping over the line?”

I found this critique to be interesting because of its criticism of the show using  First Nations stories in a commercial way. The writer even goes as far as to compare it to a science fiction show and then retorts with  “But on APTN, where it’s about “sharing our stories”, does Rabbit Fall really share our stories?” The article questions whether or not this show is culturally sensitive and pays respect to First Nations culture, or if it is simply entertainment, and should be taken as such.

October 14, 2009   No Comments

Module # 2 Weblog # 3

First Nations Drum

This is another alternative news site for First Nations stories and articles from around Canada. I find the articles to be well written and representative of many different aspects of First Nations culture. Many of the articles found in this site are the type of news stories that the mainstream media may not devote the proper amount of attention to.

There is a search engine and an excellent archive links found on this site. My reason for choosing this page is because I feel that it is important to view alternative news sources when researching First Nations issues. It reflects the current module because it is important to examine media sources that are not western society based. This website offers an excellent archive that goes back 10 years and should be very useful in finding relevant information for a multitude of academic research projects.

October 14, 2009   No Comments