jo: (Default)
[personal profile] jo
Here is a really detailed piece about how Canadian Thanksgiving came to be. It also discusses US Thanksgiving a fair bit, so Americans might want to read it since it might not be the story they're typically familiar with.

This, of course, alludes to the thing that so many people seem willfully blind to in the debate about who had Thanksgiving-style gatherings first: that they were well-established long before Europeans ever got here. Specific rituals differ from region to region, of course, but festivals that saw people expressing thanks for the bounty of the land are a common feature of most pre-contact societies in Canada and the United States.

This may be starting to sound like an argument for the abolition of Thanksgiving, given that it is textbook cultural appropriation, one that’s been repeatedly used as a tool to promote political ideals, often tied to ideas of racial and cultural superiority. The flip side of Thanksgiving’s shaky foundation, though, is that, in its modern form, it’s an invented tradition—like all holidays, really—that’s been tied to all manner of mythical stories to promote whatever vision of national or cultural identity needed at the time. That means it can be re-invented again to mean what we need it to mean now.


Profile

thebookpile: (Default)
thebookpile

April 2010

S M T W T F S
    123
45678910
11121314151617
181920212223 24
252627282930 

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags