1st Edition

The Future Imaginary in Indigenous North American Arts and Literatures

By Kristina Baudemann Copyright 2022
    246 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    246 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book examines the future in Indigenous North American speculative literature and digital arts. Asking how different Indigenous works imagine the future and how they negotiate settler colonial visions of what is to come, the chapters illustrate that the future is not an immutable entity but a malleable textual/digital product that can function as both a colonial tool and a catalyst for decolonization. Central to this study is the development of a methodology that helps unearth the signifying structures producing the future in selected works by Darcie Little Badger, Gerald Vizenor, Stephen Graham Jones, Skawennati, Danis Goulet, Scott Benesiinaabandan, Postcommodity, Kite, Jeff Barnaby, and Ryan Singer. Drawing on Jason Lewis’s "future imaginary" as the theoretical core, the book describes the various forms of textual representation and virtual simulation through which notions of Indigenous continuation are expressed in literary and new media works. Arguing that Indigenous authors and artists apply the aesthetics of the future as a strategy in their works, the volume conceptualizes its multimedia corpus as a continuously growing archive of, and for, Indigenous futures.


    1 Introduction: "Turning Our Backs On Mars" – Futures Seen Through The Window Of An Indigenous Starship

    2 Futureanalysis: Toward A Critical Paradigm

    3 Apocryphal Futures: Indigenous And Other Archives

    Part I: (Un)Writing The Future: Textual Imaginaries

    4 Apocalypse And The Archive In Gerald Vizenor’s Future World Novels

    5 Textuality And Futurity In Stephen Graham Jones’s The Fast Red Road, The Bird Is Gone, And Ledfeather

    Part II: (Dis)Simulating The Future: Imaginaries In Cyberspace

    6 The Future Is Technological: Virtual Archives In Skawennati’s Timetraveller™

    7 The Future Is Sovereign: Post-American Imaginaries In 2167

    8 The Future Is Female: Skawennati’s She Falls For Ages And The Peacemaker Returns

    9 Conclusion: The Future As Strategy


    Kristina Baudemann is an instructor and research assistant in the Department for English and American Studies at the Europa-Universität Flensburg in Germany.