Polish Indian Hobbyists and Cultural Appropriation

Open access

Abstract

This article attempts to describe the Polish-American Friends Movement (PAIFM) in the context of cultural appropriation. It first describes the history of the movement by linking it to the phenomenon of playing Indian, which started in the United States in the colonial period and then was transplanted to Europe in the late 19th century. Subsequently, it briefly presents the history of the Polish hobbyism movement in Poland, pointing out the historical, social, and psychological circumstances of its development. In the next part it defines the concept of cultural appropriation and its main types according to James Young (2010). The last part is devoted to a detailed analysis of different forms of activities of the PAIFM, especially the annual week gathering, as observed by the author during the 40th gathering of Polish Indian enthusiasts in 2016. Different types of cultural appropriation and an array of consequences resulting from such a positioning are discussed. In this paper it is argued that the negative undertones of the concept obscure the complexity of the movement as a cultural phenomenon and its multiple links with Native American cultures and their present political and cultural situation.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Axtmann Ann M. 2013. Indians and wannabes. Native American powwow dancing in the North East and beyond. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.

  • Berkhofer Robert F. 1978. The white man’s Indian: Images of the American Indian from Columbus to the present. New York NY: Alfred A. Knopf.

  • Bhabha Homi. 1984. Of mimicry and man: The ambivalence of colonial discourse. October 28 (Discipleship: A Special Issue on Psychoanalysis). 125–133. DOI: 10.2307/778467

  • Buchowska Zuzanna. 2011. “Tawacin”: A Polish Journal of American Indian Culture. Polish-AngloSaxon Studies 14–15. 157–170.

  • Brown Michael F. 2004. Who owns native culture? Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.

  • Carlson Marta. 2002. Germans playing Indians. In Colin G. Calloway Gerd Gemünden & Suzanne Zantop (eds.) Germans and Indians. Fantasies encounters projections 213–216. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Carpenter Kristen A. & Angela R. Riley. 2013. “Tribal rights human rights”. Michigan State Law Review. 293–306.

  • Churchill Ward. 1996. Spiritual hucksterism. The rise of the plastic medicine man. In Ward

  • Churchill From a native son. Selected essays in indigenism 1985–1995. 355–366. Cambridge MA: South End Press.

  • Cooper James Fenimore. 1985. The Leatherstocking Tales. Vol. 1. Washington: Library of America.

  • Deloria Philip J. 1998. Playing Indian. New Haven CT: Yale University Press.

  • Ellis Clyde Luke Eric Lassiter & Gary H. Dunham (eds.). 2005. Powwow. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Feest Christian F. 1996. Europe’s Indians. In James A. Clifton (ed.) The invented Indian: Cultural fictions and government politics 313–332. New Brunswick NJ: Transaction Publishers.

  • Feest Christian F. (ed). 1999. Indians and Europe: An Interdisciplinary collection of essays. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Graham Laura R. & H. Glenn Penny. 2014. Performing indigeneity: Global histories and contemporary experiences. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Green Rayana. 1988. The tribe called Wannabee: Playing Indians in America and Europe. Folklore 99(1). 30–35. DOI: 10.1080/0015587X.1988.9716423

  • Hall Stuart (ed.). 1997. Representation. Cultural representations and signifying practices. London: Sage Publication.

  • Hart Jonathan. 1997. Translating and resisting Empire: Cultural appropriation and postcolonial studies. In Bruce Ziff & Pratima V. Rao (eds.) Borrowed power: Essays on cultural appropriation 137–168. New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press.

  • Huggan Graham. 1996. “The neocolonialism of postcolonialism. A cautionary note”. Links and Letters 4. 19–24.

  • Kádár Judit Ágnes. 2012. Going Indian. Cultural appropriation in recent North American literature. València: Publicacions de la Universitat de València.

  • Kirwan Padraig & David Stirrup. 2013. “I’m indiginous I’m indiginous I’m indiginous. Indigenous rights British nationalism and the European far right”. In James MacKay & David Stirrup (eds.) Tribal fantasies. Native Americans in the European imaginary 1900-2010. 59–84. New York NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

  • Lutz Hartmut. 2015. Contemporary achievements. Contextualizing Canadian Aboriginal literatures. Augsburg: Wißner.

  • Maciołek Marek. 2000. We are indigenous as well... http://www.tipi.pl/news/english/interview-mm.htm (accessed 12 December 2017).

  • MacKay James & David Stirrup (eds.). 2013. Tribal fantasies. Native Americans in the European imaginary 1900–2010. New York NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

  • Mattern Mark. 1999. The powwow as a public arena for negotiating unity and diversity in American Indian life. In Duane Champagne (ed.) Contemporary Native American cultural issues 129–143. Walnut Creek CA: AltaMira Press.

  • May Karl. 2007. Winnetou the Apache knight. London: FQ Classics.

  • Nowicka Ewa. 1999. „The Polish Movement: Friends of the American Indians”. In Christian Feest (ed.) Indians and Europe: An interdisciplinary collection of essays. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Nowocień Marek. 2003. Polski Ruch Przyjaciół Indian wczoraj i dziś. [Polish American Indian Friends Movement yesterday and today]. http://www.indianie.eco.pl/PRPI2003.htm (accessed 2 November 2016).

  • Owen Suzanne. 2008. Native American spirituality: Its Appropriation and Incorporation Amongst Native and non-Native Peoples. London New York: Continuum.

  • Osborne Jennifer. 2015. Jen Osborne. Red West. http://www.jenosbornestudio.com/?/photos/TheRedWest/# (accessed 19 May 2018).

  • Osborne Jennifer. 2016. “Red West”: Interview with Jennifer Osborne. Ostlook (18 May 2016). http://ostlook.com/red-west-interview-with-jen-osbourne/ (accessed 22 August 2016).

  • Paryż Marek. 2013. Polish literary depictions of Native Americans in Soviet-era adventure novels. In James MacKay & David Stirrup (eds) Tribal fantasies. Native Americans in the European imaginary 1900–2010 154–172. New York NY: Palgrave Macmillan. DOI: 10.1057/9781137318817_9

  • Penny H. Glenn. 2014. Not playing Indian: Surrogate indigeneity and the German hobbyist scene. In Laura R. Graham & H. Glenn Penny (eds.) Performing indigeneity: Global histories and contemporary experiences 169–205. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Placek Marcin. 2003. Dominanty światopoglądowe w polskim ruchu indianistycznym [Ideological modes in the Polish Indian hobbyists movement]. Unpublished M.A. dissertation: University of Silesia in Katowice. http://www.indianie.eco.pl/r2004/placek_w.html (accessed 6 January 2017).

  • PRPI = Polski Ruch Przyjaciół Indian [Polish American Indian Friends Movement]. http://www.indianie.eco.pl/ (accessed 08 September 2016).

  • Půtová Barbora (ed.). 2017. Identity tradition and revitalization of American Indian Culture. Prague: Karolinum Press.

  • Rosiak Dariusz. 2017. Biało-czerwony. Tajemnica Sat-Okha [White-red. The mystery of Sat-Okh]. Wołowiec: Czarne.

  • Rose Carol M. 2005. Property in all the wrong places? Yale Law Journal 114(5). 991–1019. DOI: 10.2307/4135699

  • Rose Wendy. 1984. Just what’s all this fuss about whiteshamanism anyway? http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/poets/m_r/rose/whiteshamanism.htm (accessed 19 December 2017).

  • Root Deborah. 1997. “White Indians”: Appropriation and the politics of display. In Bruce Ziff & Pratima V. Rao (eds.) Borrowed power: Essays on cultural appropriation 225–233. New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press.

  • Sat-Okh (Supłatowicz Stanisław). 1958. Ziemia Słonych Skał [The Land of Salt Rocks]. Warszawa: Czytelnik.

  • Sat-Okh (Supłatowicz Stanisław). 1959. Biały Mustang [White Mustang]. Warszawa: Nasza Księgarnia.

  • Sat-Okh (Supłatowicz Stanisław). 1981. Powstanie człowieka [Emergence of Man]. Warszawa: Krajowa Agencja Wydawnicza.

  • Scafidi Susan. 2005. Who owns culture? Appropriation and authenticity in American law. New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press.

  • Šavelková Lívia. 2017a. When the creator´s “game” spreads to the world. In Barbora Půtová (ed.) Identity tradition and revitalization of American Indian Culture 74–107. Prague: Karolinum Press.

  • Šavelková Lívia. 2017b. Cross-cultural filmmaking as a process of Self-reflection: Filming Native Americans within Central European space’s prevailing imagery of the “noble savage”. Ethnologia Actualis 1(1). 133–154. DOI: 10.1515/eas-2017-0012

  • Šavelková Lívia & Milan Durňak. 2015. Globální lakrosová vesnice/Global lacrosse village. Pardubice: Univerzita Pardubice. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=feXn_NF7FEA

  • Šavelková Lívia Tomáš Petráň & Milan Durňak. 2014. Lakros – „To je způsob života“/Lacrosse – “It´s a way of life”. Prague: Cinepoint.

  • Seton Ernest Thomson. 1912. The book of woodcraft and Indian lore. New York NY: DoublePage & Company.

  • Seton Ernest Thomson & Dee Barber Seton (eds.). 2005 (1937). The gospel of the red men. A commemorative edition. Canada: World Wisdom.

  • Stirrup James. 2013. “Introduction”. In James MacKay & David Stirrup (eds) Tribal fantasies. Native Americans in the European imaginary 1900–2010. 1–25. New York NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

  • Taylor Colin F. 1988. The Indian hobbyist movement in Europe. In Wilcomb Washburn (ed.) Handbook of North American Indians. Vol. 4: History of Indian-white relations 562– 569. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press.

  • Todorova Maria. 1997. Imagining the Balkans. Oxford & New York NY: Oxford University Press.

  • Vizenor Gerald. 1998. Fugitive poses. Native American Indian scenes of absence and presence. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Vizenor Gerald (ed.). 2008. Survivance. Narratives of Native presence. Lincoln NE: University of Nebraska Press.

  • Welch James. 2001. The Heartsong of Charging Elk: A Novel. New York NY: Anchor Books.

  • Wojtaszek Aleksandra. 2002. Polscy Indianie jako wspólnota kulturowa [Polish Indians as a cultural community]. Unpublished seminar paper. Kraków: Jagiellonian University. http://www.indianie.eco.pl/litera/grupa.htm (accessed 15 September 2016).

  • Young James O. 2000. Ethics of cultural appropriation. Dalhousie Review 80(3). 301–316.

  • Young James O. 2010. Cultural appropriation and the arts. Hong Kong: Blackwell Publishing.

  • Ziff Bruce & Pratima V. Rao (eds.). 1997. Borrowed power: Essays on cultural appropriation. New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press.

Search
Journal information
Impact Factor


Cite Score 2018: 0.08

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.1
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.095

Metrics
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 291 291 37
PDF Downloads 230 230 35