Native American Writers the Feminine Earth Mother Term Paper

Pages: 3 (1000 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Native Americans

Native American Writers

The Feminine Earth Mother Through Two Different Styles

Comparison and Contrast of Cusick and Topahonso's Native American Literature

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Though their work has echoed off the hills and valleys of the United States since before the first European even began to conceive of the New World, Native Americans have only recently been included in the survey of American Literature. In fact, David Cusick's early literary work concerning the Iraqouis Native Americans succeeded not only in establishing the Native American literary genre, but also in encouraging scholars to reevaluate Native American History Combining the melodious sounds of a sophisticated oral tradition with the beautiful imagery of an untainted United States' wilderness, Native American authors have given American Literature a unique selection of poetry and prose. According to the documentary American Passages: A Literary Survey, Native Americans have long relied on beautiful sounds to craft their work. Both contemporary Native American writers and their myth-weaving predecessors have used the beautiful native tongues and the image of nature as a mother or life sustainer to create marvelous literary pieces. Though many Native American works of literature share these characteristics, works are as varied as they are beautiful. From myths that detail the creation of the world to full-length novels that describe the world through a single woman's eyes, Native American authors have left few topics untouched. Two of the most prominent Native American Authors that exemplify the extremities of these similarities and differences are Iroquois myth writer David Cusick and Navajo poet Luci Tapahonso. In fact, both Cusick's version of the Iroquois Creation Myth and Tapahonso's poem "A Breeze Swept Through" illustrate the importance of a feminine and motherly earth while still expressing a uniqueness in imagery and style.

Term Paper on Native American Writers the Feminine Earth Mother Assignment

Both Cusick's myth and Tapahonso's poem begin by establishing the earth as a woman in labor and continue to connect the earth with images of femininity and motherhood throughout the works. Cusick's version of the creation myth begins with a mother in labor, a woman who is about to begin the "travail" of having twins. The weight of the twins causes her to sink down to the "lower world" or earthy realm in order to have her children (Cusick, n.p.). Similarly, "A Breeze Swept Through" details the "first born of dawn" as she is born, slid[ing] out among crimson fluid." Though the narrator of American Passages: A Literary Survey recognizes that the poem both borrows the Navajo creation myth and tells the story of Tapahonso's relationship with her daughters and their births, the poem clearly represents the earth as feminine. In the poem, Dawn is personified as an infant being born of a mother, and birth images are coupled with nature images, such as "smooth rock." The beautiful cinematography of American Passages: A Literary Survey further illustrates these connections by accompanying the poem with breathtaking images of rocks and trees.

Both works go on to emphasize the image of the earth as a woman and a mother in their associations with creation.… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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Native American Writers the Feminine Earth Mother.  (2008, May 24).  Retrieved May 11, 2021, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/native-american-writers-feminine-earth/25850

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"Native American Writers the Feminine Earth Mother."  Essaytown.com.  May 24, 2008.  Accessed May 11, 2021.
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