April 14st 2010
Word Count: 2,240
Ana Historic is a poetic novel about a woman named Annie who discovers Mrs.Richards, a woman of no history, in Vancouver’s civic archives. Annie becomes obsessed with the possibilities of Mrs. Richards’ life. The novel is written by Daphne Marlatt, a Canadian poet. Ravensong is a fictional novel about a seventeen year-old native girl who tries to bridge the gap between the traditional ways of her Native village and white society’s invasive new values. Ravensong is written by Lee Maracle, a First Nations writer and poet. Both of these novels have brought forth important issues pertaining to Women’s and Gender Studies such as colonialism, sexuality, fear of violence, and lesbianism. This paper will focus on the topic of sexuality and colonialism.
These two novels have further educated me on many things. For example, after reading Ana Historic, I discovered that there are various narrative forms and styles other than traditional European models. Daphne Marlatt uses writing styles such as écriture feminine; in which feminist writers “try to use their own bodies as a source for writing” (Sand 10) and gynesis, which is an “aesthetic strategy which puts gender, sexuality and maternity into public discourse” (Sand 10). I also learned how femininity is constructed in a white middle class environment through what is considered appropriate conduct for a woman (Sand 10). After reading Ravensong, I discovered that in traditional aboriginal culture, men never entered the house of single women without a man being present (Maracle 103). This novel has also taught me about the important role of Raven, the trickster who is used to dissolve the boundaries between Native and white culture (Sand 20).
The novels are very different in terms of narrative styles, point-of-views, time periods, and... [continues]
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