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Unbecoming Nationalism

From Commemoration to Redress in Canada

Helene Vosters (author)

ISBN: 9780887558412

Publication Date: Aug 2019

Format: Paperback

Investigates the power of commemorative performances in the production of nationalist narratives, and examines an eclectic range of both state-sponsored social memory projects and counter-memorial projects.
£30.95

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Canada's recent sesquicentennial celebrations were the latest in a long, steady progression of Canadian cultural memory projects. Unbecoming Nationalism investigates the power of commemorative performances in the production of nationalist narratives. Using 'unbecoming' as a theoretical framework to unsettle or decolonize nationalist narratives, Helene Vosters examines an eclectic range of both state-sponsored social memory projects and counter-memorial projects to reveal and unravel the threads connecting reverential military commemoration, celebratory cultural nationalism, and white settler-colonial nationalism.

Vosters brings readings of institutional, aesthetic, and activist performances of Canadian military commemoration, settler-colonial nationalism, and redress into conversation with literature that examines the relationship between memory, violence, and nationalism from the disciplinary arenas of performance studies, Canadian studies, critical race and Indigenous studies, memory studies, and queer and gender studies. In addition to using performance as a theoretical framework, Vosters uses performance to enact a philosophy of praxis and embodied theory.
Illustrations 51 illustrations
Pages 272
Dimensions 229 x 152 x 17
Date Published 30 Aug 2019
Publisher University of Manitoba Press
Subject/s Cultural studies   Museums & museology   Other performing arts   Sociology: customs & traditions   Nationalism  
  • Introduction - Lest We Forget: The Contested Terrain of Canadian Commemoration
  • Chapter 2 The Canadian War Museum: Imagining the Canadian Nation through Military Commemoration
  • Chapter 3 Unbecoming Canadian Militarism's Forgetful Narratives: Unravelling the Uniform's Ambiguous Meanings
  • Chapter 4 The Canadian Museum for Human Rights: Collisional Encounters of Unbecoming Canadian Nationalisms
  • Chapter 5 Unbecoming Canada 150: By Many Means Necessary
Helene Vosters is an artist-activist-scholar. She holds a PhD in Theatre and Performance Studies from York University, an MFA in Queer and Activist Performance from the New College of California, and is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow and Project Coordinator with Transforming Stories, Driving Change, a research and performance initiative at McMaster University.

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