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Masquerade and Modernity in the Cypress Hills: Performing Prairie Photography in the late 1870s

  • Author / Creator
    Caverhill, Heather M.
  • Both Aboriginal people and settlers of European descent participated in the construction of a series of curious tintypes set in the late-1870s Cypress Hills. The portraits perform complex and fluid cultural identities and they represent the particular conditions of modernity experienced by those present during the last years of shared land and resource use on the Canadian Prairies. As one-of-a-kind private mementos or souvenir objects, tintype photographs anticipate intimate viewing and limited circulation. Well over a century since their construction, the original tintypes have all been reproduced, they have entered into large photograph archives, and they have been used in different, and in some cases incongruous, forms of discourse pertaining to the early years of non-Aboriginal settlement in Western Canada. With this thesis I look closely at the details of the works and I consider how the images continue to complicate and challenge the stereotypes and frontier narratives that they have been used to illustrate.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2014-11
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Arts
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3TM72850
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Art and Design
  • Specialization
    • History of Art, Design, and Visual Culture
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Boone, M. Elizabeth (Art and Design)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Carter, Sarah (History and Classics)
    • McTavish, Lianne (Art and Design)