Minority Self-Fashioning before 1830: Visual, Print, and Material Cultures


Panel organizer: Christopher Packard, New York University  chris.packard@nyu.edu


This panel explores self-representations produced in North America before 1830 that are not canonized.  Presentations on autobiographies and self-portraits by women, African Americans, Native Americans, Latin Americans, non-European immigrants, and children are welcome. Since minority self-fashioners were often excluded from official discourses, the ways they represented themselves sometimes took non-traditional forms.  In particular, presentations on self-representation in folk art, memories told to amanuenses, song lyrics that confess, clan marks, pictograms, self-silhouettes, autographs, or cemetery markers – wherever a minority voice accounted for himself or herself. Compared with and contrasted against self-fashioning strategies in familiar “Founders” texts and paintings, how did women and minorities illustrate their relationships to authority? 


Abstracts due by Friday, September 7, 2012 to chris.packard@nyu.edu