March 31, 2009

Redundancy in Sheyahshe's book

Michael Sheyahshe (Caddo) reports on a review of his book:

Another Critique of My BookA contributor to livejournal had the following to say about my book, Native Americans in Comic Books:
"The book annoyed me a bit with its critique of Native American comic book characters whose stories are set in the past. Sheyahshe commented that these characters reinforce the notion that Native Americans disappeared in the Old West days. It's a completely legitimate complaint--so the complaint itself I have no problem with...What annoyed me was the fact Sheyahshe brought this up each time he discussed one of these characters. It was very redundant. A few paragraphs at the beginning of the book, to comment on the problem and mention its applicability to all "historical" characters, would have made for a better reading experience."


"Thankfully there are plenty of modern-day Native American comic book characters, so I didn't have to suffer through his redundant complaint too much."


"One omission that surprised me was the lack of commentary on the names that so many Native American comic characters have. The only name Sheyahshe commented on was Tonto's (Spanish for "stupid")."


"Overall, though, I did enjoy reading the book. It made for a nice, nostalgic trip, and it sparked my interest in a comic book called Tribal Force, the creative work of a Tucsonan."
I can certainly see how someone might see parts of the book as repetitive: as an examination of many stereotypes and many comic books, there's bound to be a certain recurring element. Add to this, my use of a very specific set of criteria to evaluate the level of stereotype in each study and you can well imagine how a reader might feel this way, initially.
Comment:  I still haven't read this book. I'm sure I'll find it captivating and engrossing, so I'm waiting until I have some free time.

For more on the subject, see Comic Books Featuring Indians.

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