chapter  16
17 Pages

Countering Visual Regimes: History, Place, and Subjectivity in the Art of Hachivi Edgar Heap of Birds

WithHERTHA D. SWEET WONG

A period of intense social turmoil and technological development, the last half of the twentieth century gave rise to second-and third-wave feminisms, Ethnic Studies programs, the multicultural wars, postcolonial rearticulations, and radical transdisciplinary experimentation in literature and art. A growing body of artistic production by women and ethnic minorities in the United States and Canada exposed “universality” as a Western concept that generally excluded non-Western experiences and epistemologies. Individual identity itself was deconstructed: the notion of an autonomous, singular subjectivity was determined to be a sociohistorical construction privileging Western males and excluding the more relational, multiple, and situational subjectivities of many women and men from non-Western cultures. Heretofore relatively unheard voices and unseen images of women and underrepresented minorities proliferated in literature and art.