Freeside Europe Online Academic Journal

Freeside Europe Online Academic Journal

Modern cultural, literary and linguistic perspectives

Judit Ágnes Kádár: Archibald Belaney/Grey Owl, the Liminal Being of Ruffo's Long Verse


Archibald Belaney alias Grey Owl, is a hero of early 20th Century Canadian environmentalism and an antihero of the partly Ojibwa Canadian Ruffo's Grey Owl: the Mystery of Archibald Belaney (1996). In a longer paper I explore the question as to why his cross-cultural transformation is still met with such excitement today and what we can learn about transatlantic relations in the view of this shape shifting protagonist? Here I focus on Belaney's cross-cultural (trans-ethnic) transformation, the motivations underlying his change, the alter ego he developed, and the power and implication of his character from the perspective of the episteme and race relations of his age (epistemological trickster and racialization). In addition, I discuss Ruffo's poetic experimentation with masking and narrative unmasking, and I attempt to answer the question regarding who needs myths of Indianness in the first place.

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ISSN 1786-7967

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