Almighty Voice and His Wife by Daniel David MosesThis is my favourite play so far from my Modern Canadian Drama courses reading list. Its sardonic and meta without being overwhelmingly, pretentiously so; its serious without being didactic; its moving without collapsing upon the exhausted bedsprings of melodrama. I could see the whole thing in my head, the teepee made of light, the bleeding moon, the sickening-funny-parodic vaudeville.
Perhaps this is more obvious to others, but it took me a little while to realize: both the first and second Acts are episodic, in their own ways - and as such they both are interpretations, showing mere highlights interlocked in a narrative fashion. We, white audiences, read our own expectations and conventions for dramatic structure into this play when really those conventions may not be there, or only their shadows may be. Daniel David Moses, a First Nations playwright himself, has playfully and masterfully written this play so that the storytelling tradition of his own culture is evident, yet in our dominant-culture ignorance we tend to mask it for ourselves. When I saw how this works, I could appreciate the complexity of this deceptively simple story much more fully.
I also love the idea of whiteface. Some of my classmates felt it was racist, and from a very objective perspective I suppose it is. I looked on it, though, more as an appropriation of colonial methods of appropriation. Metappropriation, huzzah! I jest. But seriously, there are so many more resonances to the whiteface than merely reversing the direction of racism (for example, the idea that Ghost and Interlocutor are actually ghosts).
Wish I could say more, but a) I have to think about it some more; b) I have another class to get to (for which I totally didnt do the assigned Faulkner reading; f*** that shit). I have no doubt this is a play Ill return to read, and hopefully one day SEE, many many times.
Elijah & Elisha - GOD JESUS destroys baal prophets - Ahab & Jezebel - Chapter 6
Almighty Voice and His Wife
The subject who is truly loyal to the Chief Magistrate will neither advise nor submit to arbitrary measures. In the fall of , a decade after Louis Riel was hanged for treason for leading the North West Rebellion, Almighty Voice was arrested in Saskatchewan for a more prosaic reason: He shot a cow that, for some reason lost to history, the authorities didn't think he had the legal right to shoot. This banal incident might be long forgotten if it weren't for a case of really bad comic timing. After a police guard joked to Almighty Voice that he was going to be hanged - har, har - the Cree man broke out of prison in Duck Lake and went on the lam for the next year and a half. The North West Mounted Police chased after him and did eventually get their man - but it took a cannon to bring him down in the end and three Mounties and a postmaster died in the pursuit. While The Globe reported at the time that Almighty Voice was simply "a bad Cree Indian," his story has blossomed into a heroic legend that has inspired countless Canadian artists since. The s were a particular boom time for Almighty Voice stories, as he appeared in a play by Len Peterson, a film starring Donald Sutherland, and in Pierre Berton's tome The Wild Frontier.
If the content you are seeing is presented as unstyled HTML your browser is an older version that cannot support cascading style sheets. If you wish to upgrade your browser you may download Mozilla or Internet Explorer for Windows. He has a B. Moses explores the catastrophic consequences of the collision of Native and non-Native cultures and societies in his plays. His dark play In City of Shadows , all of the characters from the earlier plays revisit the previous events as ghosts.
This is a Two-Act Play. In this act there is a love story, as it is, between these two as they negotiate a relationship — she sends away his first wife, send her back, and she becomes the first wife. They talk — she is young, but determined — about how his father is taken the night before their wedding, and further on, how he gets picked up at Duck Lake for killing a cow. They run away together to avoid the Mounties, and they feel starving hunger, but still, they laugh. His mother sang her death song.