Thursday, November 02, 2006

The History Graduate Students Committee invites you to attend the first installment of the 2006-2007 HGSC Lecture Series, featuring Dr. Keith Thor Carlson (Dept of History) presenting: “Dreams, Footnotes, and History”

Today, Thursday November 2nd 4:00-5:00 in Arts 214

The footnote: a citation or brief explanation. But what does one do when the person we’re interviewing tells us that he or she is not, in fact, the source of historical information, but merely a conduit; that the voice transmitting the “historical evidence” is not the ethnographic “other” sitting across the table from us, but the other’s other – an ancestral voice acquired not from memory in the western sense, but from dreams across shamanic chasms? And how do we respond when the other’s other informs us that our own voice is actually not ours, but one directed by an Aboriginal ancestral spirit whose alleged design is to influence questions so as to illicit particular responses? In such a relationship where does the power and agency reside, and more basically, how does one cite one’s source? Building upon such diverse historical theorists as Michel de Certeau, Carlo Ginzburg, and Marshall Sahlins, Carlson engages with Salish indigenous knowledge and explains how he came to learn that skepticism isn't always as clever as one might think, and why a historical footnote can be a difficult thing to craft.

The Lecture is open to the general public. We hope to see you there!