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The cover of the book “Writers from the Earth. The Indigenous Theater of Floyd Favel”, edited by Aneta Głowacka, Eugenia Sojka
Writers from the ground. The indigenous theater of Floyd Favel , edited by Aneta Głowacka, Eugenia Sojka, SIW, Katowice 2021
Writers from the ground is a publication focusing on the activities of Floyd Favel, who describes himself as a theater theorist, essayist, social journalist, cultural leader and playwright of the Kri nation (one of Canada’s indigenous peoples). The main themes in the book are the issues of colonial mentality, decolonization and the process of indigenization, which are strongly present in Favel’s socio-artistic activities. Indigenous methodologies used in their research by non-indigenous (non-local) researchers, primarily the ethical principles of dialogue with the people of the First Nations and responsibility, oppose Western, strictly ethnographic and anthropological studies of indigenous cultures. The tales of non-indigenous researchers and the tales of Favel make up the publication,
The book is divided into two main parts. The first is the aforementioned research-stories of non-indigenous people who participate in Favel’s activities. The authors of individual articles take up topics such as: the activity of Floyd Favel, the condition of Canadian theater from the perspective of First Nations artists, indigenous organic philosophy (which in Western discourses is referred to as posthumanism), vaskawewin (movement), storytelling and its varieties (e.g. holy tales, personal document narratives, i.e. stories that have been witnessed), or descriptions of specific ceremonies of the Kri people. The common feature of the articles is their form, combining Western scientific discourse with storytelling, which is one of the most important culture-forming mechanisms of the First Nations peoples, and is also one of the elements that create indigenous theater.
The second part of the publication consists of essays by Floyd Favel, divided into three parts. The first of them, Voice from the Inside of the Earth , is a collection of texts describing the condition of the indigenous peoples in North America and their connection with the earth, or the lack of this connection, forced by institutional and internalized racism. Second part, Indigenous Theater Laboratory, is focused around issues related to the search for one’s own method of work for indigenous theater as a sovereign form, not marginalized to peripheral or ethnic theater. Among other things, Favel proposes an equation that would constitute a theatrical event: Tr (tradition) + Pr (process) = Th2 (double the power of the theatrical process). This double power of the theatrical process would lead to purification thanks to the magic it contains and the mystery associated with the indigenous tradition. The last part, entitled Teksty o Ziemi , consists of two literary works: the drama Lord of the Dew and the philosophical poem Redskins – Red Magic .
All the texts contained in the Writer from the Earth make up an extraordinary collection that fits in the convention of stories intertwining personal and community experiences. Scientific discourse, artistic searches, memories and stories of the First Nations indicate not only the importance of indigenous theatrical thought for contemporary thinking about methods of artistic work, but also allow for the construction of an alternative, non-appropriate form of telling about theater.
Ashes and Embers
Part 1 – Revitalizing Indigenous Languages using the Plains Indian Sign Language
Part 2 – 30 Word Cree – PISL Dictionary
Part 3 – The Battle of Cutknife Hill 1885 told in PISL
Starring Dr. Lanny Real Bird, Floyd Favel, Reanna Daniels and Kelly Daniels
Produced by Floyd Favel, Miyawata Culture Inc. With the help of the Department of Canadian Heritage.
Edited By Alix Van Der Donckt-Ferrand
Filmed by Byron Real Bird and Alix Van Der Donckt-Ferrand
The Story of Broken Knife Lookout
Written by Floyd Favel , Illustrations by Alix Van Der Donckt-Ferrand
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