Land, Memory, and the Struggle for Indigenous Rights: Lee Maracle’s “Goodbye, Snauq”


This paper argues that the struggle for Indigenous rights is in transition and that new paradigms are arising. There is a growing sense that the well-established legal and political approaches of fighting for “recognition” have become stalled, and a politics of enactment as a community-based alternative is now emerging. Creative expressions of sovereignty, through dance, song, and other performative forms have emerged as a potent way to shift the discourse of rights away from a politics of recognition and towards one of enactment. In Lee Maracle’s “Goodbye Snauq,” a vision of an embodied, sensory-driven practice of sovereignty makes possible a more open-ended and critically informed conception of Indigenous rights in a time of change.

This article “Land, Memory, and the Struggle for Indigenous Rights: Lee Maracle’s “Goodbye, Snauq”” originally appeared in Indigenous Literature and the Arts of Comunity. Spec. issue of Canadian Literature 230-231 (Autumn/Winter 2016): 178-195.

Please note that works on the Canadian Literature website may not be the final versions as they appear in the journal, as additional editing may take place between the web and print versions. If you are quoting reviews, articles, and/or poems from the Canadian Literature website, please indicate the date of access.