Unsettling Miss Chief and Buffalo Boy: Interrupting Canada's Politics of Reconciliation

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Pinkofsky, Temma




This project explores how the interruptive elements of queer Indigenous art shows reconciliatory processes as founded on desires for a unified national political community. I draw out how these processes centre on a myth of a self-enclosed sovereignty that maintains settler colonial violence. I specifically examine how the artwork of Canadian Two-Spirit artists Adrian Stimson and Kent Monkman is critical of Indigenous-settler relations and in what ways their criticisms speak to current practices of reconciliation. I argue that their artwork are examples of how queer Indigenous art presents alternative images of being that destabilize the conceptualization of sovereignty underpinning Canada’s framework of reconciliation. Such art interrupts by disrupting Canada’s image as a benevolent state and by opening up a space to imagine what political, social, and legal relations might look like with alternative conceptions of sovereignty.


Gender Studies
Political Science




Carleton University

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Master of Arts: 

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Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Legal Studies

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Theses and Dissertations

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