Place names accrue meaning and thus become the loci of contradictions. The beginning of Alanis Obomsawin’s The People of the Kattawapiskak River (2012) points out such a misalignment of reading in the place mentioned by the film’s title: “In Cree the word Attawapiskat means ‘the space between the rocks,’ in Ottawa, it has become the symbol of a nationwide problem” (0:10-0:15).1 Obomsawin, born in New Hampshire but raised in Quebec, is a filmmaker of Abenaki descent whose work primarily focuses on the struggles of Indigenous people in Canada. Her 2012 documentary The People of the Kattawapiskak River structurally and thematically represents her roster of almost 50 films. As shown in her handling of the word “Attawapiskat,” Obomsawin deftly cuts between the local and the national; the documentary interlaces personal interviews with Cree inhabitants of the reservation and proceedings from the national parliament. 

The “nationwide problem” in question is one of resource. In particular, Obomsawin shows us how the Attawapiskat reservation stands in for a federal failure in the provision of natural resources. As she explains in the film, Attawapiskat is found in the northern, subarctic regions of Cree territory, where average temperatures are around 40-50 degrees below zero. The town, which has a long history of intervention by both Catholic missionaries and the Canadian government, can properly be described as the site of a dereliction of duty for the Canadian government. Specifically, as Obomsawin narrates, Treaty 9—one of 11 “numbered treaties” that the Canadian government made with Indigenous groups between 1871 and 1921—“specified that one square mile would be reserved for each family of five.” This was a “false promise,” for the land left to the Cree in this area was “too small for their survival.” Given that the Cree were “traditionally dependent on gathering their food from the land,” their life disappeared, because, as Obomsawin says, “the colonizers took over their land, their natural resources and their way of being” (7:15-8:00).

Obomsawin thus characterizes their loss as the loss of access to natural resource. But Obomsawin’s work—particularly this documentary and, as I shall touch upon, her short film Sigwan (2005)—also helps us see how the governmental or media discourse surrounding natural resources (as represented by the discussion above) might be reframed, or how such discourse too easily degrades into incomplete advocacy. To simply restore natural resources is not quite enough, or should not be held as an end in and of itself—even if such material restorations are a vital starting point. Obomsawin’s work does implicate the Canadian government as failing to achieve the bare minimum for the Cree—the provision of water, shelter, and humane conditions. But we can also approach the question of natural resource provision from another perspective, which would rearrange our assignment of agency and attend to Indigenous forms of spirituality—what if natural resources are not provided for human consumption, but rather reinstalled as part of a relationship between humans and nature? Rendered agential, natural resources do not come into contact with human beings to fulfill a human need, but rather act, with their own innate force, upon human beings open to receiving their benefits. As we shall see, Obomsawin’s work implicitly indicts political discourse about “resource” as improperly remaining in the frame of transaction; it considers, as an alternative, what happens when lumber, water, and land are discussed not as exchange pieces but as partners with whom the Cree might restore healthy relations. 

The People of the Kattawapiskak River primarily presents relationships between human and nature in the negative—that is, the reservation’s conditions frequently impede the possibility for human beings to have nature’s resources acting upon them. The first few families we see in the documentary suffer from a pointed lack of resource. Ron Lathail’s family has no hydro in his household; Lisa Marie Linklater has no running water. These families are in a seemingly unceasing place of helplessness, but Obomsawin suggests their problems would not be automatically mitigated by the presence of material resource. Rosie Koostachin, a leader within the Atawapiskat tribe, notes that lumber has been set up to arrive in the reservation but points out another problem: “I don’t even know where they gonna build those houses that they bringing. I really don’t know where they going to put them, we don’t have that much room” (10:45-10:55). Resource alone does not alleviate the issue of the broken human relationship with the natural world, the cutting off of the person from the potential actors of nature.

What is needed is a broader reconstruction: a restoration of ties with the natural world, whose capacity to act on human bodies is premised on an acknowledgement of nature’s agency. In recent years the field of New Materialism and its various diffractions into ecocriticism have shaped how scholars think about non-human agency. This essay does not mean to suggest that New Materialism should provide the primary vocabulary with which to understand Indigenous documentary film. If anything, my analysis of Obomsawin’s work through New Materialist theories shows how Indigenous thought encapsulates New Materialism. By placing Obomsawin in conversation with New Materialism, I hope to help bridge the gap between this fairly prominent theoretical framework and the vast amount of Indigenous media, a body of work which not only makes incarnate New Materialism’s ideas about agency but involves them in a crucial political conversation. This political valence helps invigorate, for example, the field of material ecocriticism, a subfield that shows us how the environment can be framed not as a homogeneous entity but as a dense network of agencies that ropes in its human pieces. Drawing from New Materialism’s foundational point that agency is inherent within matter itself, material ecocriticism rethinks nature entirely: in place of this setting, this environ-ment within which human beings act and adjudicate, the world is, as Serenella Iovino and Serpil Oppermann put it, “filled…with intermingling agencies and forces that persist and change over eons, producing new forms, bodies, and natures.”2 Nature’s meaning is not conjured at its intersection with the human actor but exists inherently in the world’s components.

A documentary about nature need only show us nature to show us a story. A basic cinematic gesture—when Obomsawin simply shows us a house, a river, a snow-filled landscape—is enough to engage in narrative, because, as Oppermann writes, “nonhuman natures” are already characterized by the “creative experience.”3 But recognizing the agency of nature reminds us that even if we do not act on nature it will still act upon us. The problem of lacking natural resource is that we fail to corral our own agency with the agency nature indelibly possesses.

This is all to say something about the way in which we critique political failure—which, in Obomsawin’s film, may seem to be the Canadian government’s inability to provide natural resources. But this is only the precondition for a deeper and more historical problem—the Indigenous loss of land and the devaluation of their spiritual ways of being with nature. Obomsawin raises a more specific problem: the people of the Kattawapiskak River have lost the means by which natural resource can productively work its agency onto them. Obomsawin’s trenchant political critique shows us that Indigenous practices emphasizing reciprocal, non-extractive relationships with nature have been victims of the broken political promises of the numbered treaties and the residential school system that sought to eliminate Indigenous identity. Sending materials to the community is an insufficient corrective, not least because, as Margaret Okimaw-Lavalley says in the documentary, “material is very expensive when they ship it up here” (6:05-6:10). Her comment speaks to the importance of a broader restoration of an ethical and sustainable relationship with material resource—a societal reignition not only of economic flourishing but of a relationship with nature.

To be sure, we should not divest human agency in emphasizing relationality. This dual thrust—concurrently emphasizing the resonance between all things and the possibility for effective action at the individual agent’s level—appears when certain Indigenous scholars comment or draw upon New Materialism. For example, Dian Million (Tanana Athabaskan) suggestively raises the political potential of New Materialism when she asks: “What would our governances be if they already assumed that all life, all life’s ‘vibrant matter,’ rather than…an impossible universal subject, formed their primary responsibility?”4 Million’s statement suggests how Indigenous praxis expands on the theoretical suppositions of New Materialism, forming what Jordan B. Kinder (Métis Nation of Alberta), among others, calls “Indigenous materialism.” For Kinder, “Indigenous materialism’s emancipatory horizon” is not purely philosophical but is, instead the pursuit of “equitable political economies and nurturing ethical relations between humans and the more-than-human world.”5 Most pertinently to Obomsawin’s film, Cree forms of being account for a capacious understanding of agency. As Bryan D. Cummins relates in his ethnography “Only God Can Own the Land”: The Attawpiskat Cree, the nation organizes itself along several different scales of familial organization. Families are brought together both in “microbands” and “macrobands,” so that ownership is consistently nested in Cree culture.6 As the title of the ethnography suggests, however, ultimate “ownership” rests entirely apart from the human being. In this light, societies move towards larger forms and scales of organization, gradually recognizing a spiritual configuration of property. 

Throughout The People of the Kattawapiskak River, we see characters restoring agency to such spiritual forces. Lisa Marie Linklater’s words frame the documentary’s spiritual understanding of the community: “The creator has the ultimate power and authority. Maybe this happen for a reason” (2:20-2:40). Linklater’s statements are a positive resignation, a willful subsumption of the community to an all-knowing spirit in whom trust can be returned. And yet throughout the film we see a more negative resignation, as when Linklater herself dismally reveals that her only hope is in her place on a “waiting list for a house” better than the decrepit one she occupies (5:10-5:15). Due to her circumstances, Linklater’s initial attitude towards the Creator morphs into a condition where she cannot have any relationship with nature other than one mediated the brutal inhospitality of her conditions of shelter: “I have no running water in here. We have no wash room. I’m only using instant chord for electricity.” (3:55-4:10). At a basic level, the documentary points the finger at the government, showcasing the dreary realities of quotidian Attawapiskat life. But the film approaches these dismal conditions at a more complex level, asking what happens to agency and blame as they are exchanged and turned into units of political discourse.

Indigenous people become convenient symbolic kickballs in political games. Obomsawin depicts leaders—federal or communal—as being primarily concerned with the allocation of blame. Stephen Harper, prime minister of Canada at the time, begins this political game in the documentary’s opening minutes, appropriately in the passive voice: “There’s a need, obviously, for services and infrastructure. There is also clearly a need for better management” (1:20-1:25). Not excluding the nation’s own political leaders, Obomsawin then shows Theresa Spence, chief of the Attawapiskat First Nation, also caught up in the blame game: “The way it is right now, he’s pointing the fact—the problem to me that was my fault which it is not” (1:30-1:40). Formally, Obomsawin shows us this by making rapid cuts towards parliamentary debate, which instrumentalizes the Attawapiskat problem and risks placing them under an unfair scrutiny. At one point, Obomsawin shows us a reporter critiquing the Attawapiskat for using money on a hockey rink instead of on more vital resources. 

The reporter’s move may drive us, once more, to consider why resource is emphasized so keenly in the first place. Critics have frequently questioned the political motivations of those stressing resource dispersal. In Necropolitics, for example, Achille Mbembe contends that the “new geography of resource extraction” implies the “emergence of an unprecedented form of governmentality that consists in managing the multitudes” (emphasis Mbembe’s).7 To claim the need to manage and organize the resources and the apparatuses built around them, governments may take natural resources with “war machines,” often concomitant with “brutal attempts to immobilize and spatially fix whole categories of people.”8 In the complex logistical problem of resource management, Mbembe shows us, the supposed need for a paternalistic federal government may condition dependents like the Cree as seeing themselves as nothing other than recipients of governmental generosity.

Obomsawin’s film proposes a more devolved, and thus more sustainable, relationship with natural resources. As I have shown above, such a relationship is a consequence of the agency foisted upon materiality by New Materialist thinkers. But New Materialism’s liberality might, in certain instances, become politically problematic for marginalized groups—what if an expansion of agency absolves political actors of responsibility? Jane Bennett, perhaps the foremost proponent of New Materialism, notes this very problem in Vibrant Matter: “It is ultimately a matter of political judgment what is more needed today: should we acknowledge the distributive quality of agency to address the power of human-nonhuman assemblages and to resist a politics of blame? Or should we persist with a strategic understatement of material agency in the hopes of enhancing the accountability of specific humans?”9

These questions may be unresolvable. But Obomsawin’s work shows us how documentary storytelling, and narrative more generally, grapples with their incessancy. Drawing on postmodernism’s emphasis of the linguistic construction of the world, but centering the resurgence of materiality in that comprehension, material ecocritics have argued that “all matter…is a ‘storied matter.’”10 Material ecocriticism thus encourages us to discern narrative complexity in what might otherwise look dead; so too does documentary filmmaking shuffle its “nonfictional” subjects into narrative warmth. Documentaries enkindle the most quotidian objects of the world. In The People of the Kattawapiskak River, for instance, there is an interesting moment when Obomsawin shows us, very briefly, a Cree man’s household stores of lumber (insert image 1). The shot is but a few seconds long, but comes after the man himself has narrated his household’s lack of resource. It also comes after we see that man cutting a log from his stockpile. That the shot ends the scene gives it a prime position, positioning it as the “frame” of the human narrative; Obomsawin privileges material nature, giving it the final word.

In and of itself the shot of the logs tells a story. Even without the humans who use them, the logs exist and deserve attention in their own right. Even outside of human consciousness, the logs exert a force of agency through their sheer presence. Obomsawin engenders what Iovino and Oppermann describe as the “thinking” of “meaning and matter together.”11 By divesting the resources in the Attawapiskat community from the humans who act upon them and may thus be seen as their overlords, Obomsawin uses the transparent eye of the camera to make us think about materiality beyond their human-political utility. The political emphasis on materiality as the primary problem of the community is predicated on regarding resources only as being important in its usage by people. This is not only discordant with Indigenous ways of seeing matter but more nefariously can divert attention away from structural political issues, policy shortcomings not remediated by sheer material restoration.

Resource can be the avenue by which the Cree and their allies indict federal dispossessions of land and natural materials, but it can also open up the alternative by which that kind of sovereignty might be restored. How might resource drive incorporation, that is, the reconciling of parts that have been separated, the creation of a coherent whole and the refusal to exclude the successions of marginalized entities?

Material ecocritics implicitly grapple with the question of incorporation when elucidating the process of network formation. For instance, Iovino and Oppermann draw on what Karen Barad calls “diffraction”—a “material-discursive phenomenon that challenges the presumed inherent separability of subject and object”—to suggest that “textual interpretation” should become site and praxis of incorporation, of “entanglement.”12 As critics we bring materials into conjunction with each other by showing how they might be read in terms of each other. Texts do not so much reflect the world but rather embody the entanglements of agency within it; “textual interpretation,” as they term it, is an articulation of innate coherence among the world’s materials. 

Art might then simulate political incorporation; through its revelations, particularly when teased out by the practice of interpretation, disparate details can be unified by surprising threads. On its surface, there is much about The People of the Kattawapiskak River that is purely representational—a blend of expository and participatory modes of documentary filmmaking. That is, the film gives us details about Attawapiskat history, offers visual evidence of the reservation’s conditions of degradation, and de-alienates the potentially distant figure of the director by involving Obomsawin herself in voice-over and in the physical space of the documentary. But Obomsawin’s documentary cannot fail to also work in an interpretive mode; its “objective” posture of storytelling revitalizes what might otherwise be simply taken wholesale. Documentary thus follows New Materialism’s enlivening of the nonhuman world by showing us the basic and avowedly real stuff of life in a narrative frame. But Obomsawin’s explicitly narrative films show us how fables, loosened from the expectations of bona fide life, may unite political and natural forms of incorporation. 

In her short film Sigwan (2005), Obomsawin tells the story of a young girl named Sigwanis who runs into the forest because she is not allowed to go to her community’s festival. Her reason for exclusion is important: “I’m sad because I’m not allowed to go to the celebration and dance. They said you’re not part of the nation. I don’t have any moccasins and I’m barefooted.”13  Sigwanis says this while talking to a kind bear, who plays with her and brings her to his own community of bears in the forest. Sigwanis’s incorporation into this group prefigures and thus models her more explicitly human-political incorporation—it is from the group of bears that her parents find her, confident in the wake of her exclusion, and bring her home. Thus nature displays how incorporation might be achieved, showing the positive consequences of carefully considering our convergence with the natural-material world. Nature calls to us, invites us, as is evident from Sigwan’s opening salvos. Framing the story of the young girl is a depiction of a storyteller who approaches a group of children to detail the welcoming calls of nature: “The village was alive and rich with flowers, fruits and berries. It was a time of plenty. The lush, green trees invited us to sit in their shade” (2:55-3:05).

Nature beckons. That nature has a generous agential capacity is, at a rudimentary level, part of an Indigenous spiritual worldview that considers how the environment possesses its own life force. It is not strange to the storyteller that the trees might display the agency assumed in inviting humans. This shift towards a respectful recognition and engagement with nature may be familiar in theory, but it also holds a more significant move. Seeing nature not as a passive entity for human exploitation but as an active participant—lively in being “lush” and “green,” potent in its “invitation”—marks nature as indispensable precisely because it can be made to act upon us. 

What I am suggesting here is an environmental reading of the implications of New Materialism’s emphasis on material agency. Bennett seems to notice that the field’s basic observations will produce more sustainable ways of being—rather sensibly, an awareness of the subjectivity of the nonhuman world ought to prompt a reduction in exploitative practice and a corresponding increase in relationality (that value at the center of much Indigenous philosophy). But more excitingly, Bennett leads us to think about how our essential “ethical responsibility” is in considering ourselves within “the assemblages in which” we find ourselves “participating.”14 In this context our self-examination amounts to: “Do I attempt to extricate myself from assemblages whose trajectory is likely to do harm? Do I enter into the proximity of assemblages whose conglomerate effectivity tends towards the enactment of nobler ends?”15

Implicit in Bennett’s formulation is that we must consider how other beings might act upon us within the reflective efficacy of an assemblage. By its own structure an assemblage prompts a redistributive ethic; Bennett implies that entering the forest brings us into an already-existing world with its own energies. We need only resonate. Such is the lesson of the story of Sigwan, who enters the forest without harm on her mind and thus finds that she has always belonged, not just there but in all assemblages. Sigwan’s journey into the forest discovers precisely what Stacy Alaimo discerns among the material world: “An ethics in place can be sparked by the human desire for surprise, for play, for the possibility of becoming, by realizing it is possible for the agency, the activities, the becomings of the nonhuman to recreate a seemingly static site into a place of energy and transformation.”16 Alaimo echoes Bennett’s most foundational concept, that vitality of materialism implicit in her book’s title, the notion that “the smallest or simplest body or bit may indeed express a vital impetus, conatus or clinamen,” but that it “never really acts alone.”17 Actants, particularly human actants, are mischaracterized as the primary loci of agency. 

Agency instead arises from harmonic coordination. Nature, when well formed within itself, thus serves as a paradigm for effective energy dispersal, for agency. In the forest of Sigwan Obomsawin shows us how actants properly act in conjunction with each other. Right before being found by her family, Sigwan is seen sitting in a circle of bears, whose geometric balance provides a representation of sacred and perfect incorporation. This is the effect that Bennett hypothesizes in an assemblage—the “emergent properties” which are precisely “emergent in that their ability to make something happen…is distinct from the sum of the vital force of each materiality considered alone.”18 In Sigwan, what emerges is the vision of political and natural incorporation that concurrently but not at all coincidentally cures the desolation of childhood loneliness. 

For it is in childhood’s relative innocence, its lack of degrading imprinting, that the possibility of restorative natural agency becomes most effective. Obomsawin’s narrative short film proposes the mechanisms by which the natural can work wonders upon the child, but in her work this process does not remain the exclusive province of fiction. In The People of the Kattawapiskak River, released seven years after Sigwan, Obomsawin finds evidence for nature’s benefits amidst the film’s general theme of resource lack. Early in the film we see that the lack of—or, to put it in terms of relationality, the disconnect from—resource is an acute problem for these Cree families because of the difficulties it imposes on their children. From the outset the documentary links the process of child rearing to the capacity to be connected to streams of resource. But resources, beyond allowing for the sustenance of children, is vital because, as Obomsawin shows us, children need resources to act upon them. In certain moments nature is attributed with simply working by its sheer presence, as when the schoolteacher Sharon Hunter, discussing a class of Cree children, relates the story of one student making a fire, that unifying entity of Sigwan

We had a fire and the kids really…had a rest. They had a little bit of a break from things. Then they talked about how hard things are sometimes and just that kind of quiet time you know, when you’re having a fire and people talk. That’s the time when we start seeing that they really care about each other. I guess I saw that youth later in the weekend and he had pride like he…said the whole school should be here. (41:35-42:25)

Here the fire almost magically enacts a sense of togetherness, bringing the Cree children out of gloom and thus propagating itself. Put one way, Obomsawin gives us a positive manifestation of the kind of assemblage that Bennett discusses theoretically. 

The fire is a vision, one that helps us reframe what natural resource might be doing more broadly. Natural resource, in this case, is something whose “utility” for us is outside the gamut of our control—as with the children, nature can draw people in, but its use-value is not something explicitly economic. Rather, the fire draws the students in without full comprehension. It may have similar effects on older people. Late in the documentary, the elderly Cree William Wesley offers his own testament of nature’s efficacy while discussing how his late wife and him used to go into the forest to gather moss and fish: “Every time we go in the bush we always get better” (44:50-45:00). For Wesley there is something simply about being with nature; Wesley perceives that nature ineffably works as the kind of assemblage to which we, as Bennett might put it, ought to place ourselves in proximity. Nature is the paragon of assemblages that ennoble us. 

Though such conceptions of nature might be dismissed as naive by those skeptical to pastoralism, they also represent an Indigenous critique of Western materialism. Natural resources are not important to human beings because they are something we can use for our own ends. They are important because they are entities to which we can place ourselves in healthy relation. Natural resources are a site of potential comportment, of reciprocality. When human circumstances are, as in the case of the Attawapiskak “problem,” out of whack, the sheer addition of more resources hardly serves as a corrective—this is the failure of agents fundamentally oriented towards an exploitative vision of nature, like Obomsawin’s federal government. 

In place of that perspective is something sustainable—the sacred fire. The fire, which in Sigwan is that place where fraternity and relationality among all beings and creatures can be found, works as the center writ large, what Paula Gunn Allen (Laguna Pueblo) deems as the site necessary in keeping intact the “nature of the tribal community.”19 Natural resources are those entities around which other entities, humans among them, can formulate themselves. Human beings and natural resources are always enmeshed, but humans do not use the fire as much as the fire uses them to spark a capacity for association. “You finally arrived home,” says one of the bears, when Sigwan and her host bear approach the fire for the first time. Unsurprisingly a fire provides warmth—not a warmth for us to use up, but a warmth that provokes its own expansion.

Works Cited

  • Alaimo, Stacy. Exposed: Environmental Politics and Pleasures in Posthuman Times. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2016.
  • Allen, Paula Gunn. The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions. Boston: Beacon Press, 1992.
  • Barad, Karen. Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2007.
  • Bennett, Jane. Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010.
  • Cummins, Brian D. “Only God Can Own the Land”: The Attawapiskat Cree. Toronto: Pearson, 2004.
  • Iovino, Serenella and Serpil Oppermann. “Introduction: Stories Come to Matter.” In Material Ecocriticism, edited by Iovino and Oppermann, 1-17.
  • —-, editors. Material Ecocriticism. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2014).
  • Kinder, Jordan B. “Indigenous Infrastructuralisms?: Grounding Materialisms along and against the Pipeline.” symploke, vol. 31, nos. 1-2 (2023): 103-18.
  • Mbembe, Achille. Necropolitics. Translated by Steven Corcoran. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2019.
  • Million, Dian. Therapeutic Nations: Healing in an Age of Indigenous Human Rights. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2013.
  • Oppermann, Serpil. “From Ecological Postmodernism to Material Ecocriticism: Creative Materiality and Narrative Agency.” In Material Ecocriticism, edited by Iovino and Oppermann, 21-36.
  • The People of the Kattawapiskak River. Directed by Alanis Obomsawin, National Film Board of Canada, 2012.
  • Sigwan. Directed by Alanis Obomsawin, National Film Board of Canada, 2005.


  1. The People of the Kattawapiskak River, directed by Alanis Obomsawin (National Film Board of Canada, 2012), 0:10-0:15, hereafter cited parenthetically. Obomsawin alternatively uses Kattawapiskak and Attawapiskat; the latter is the official government-designated name, while the former is a name that some believe a more proper signification of the Indigenous name.
  2. Serenella Iovino and Serpil Oppermann, “Introduction: Stories Come to Matter” in Material Ecocriticism, eds. Iovino and Oppermann (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2014), p. 1.
  3. Serpil Oppermann, “From Ecological Postmodernism to Material Ecocriticism: Creative Materiality and Narrative Agency” in Material Ecocriticism, p. 30.
  4. Dian Million, Therapeutic Nations: Healing in an Age of Indigenous Human Rights (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2013), p. 179.
  5. Jordan B. Kinder, “Indigenous Infrastructuralisms?: Grounding Materialisms along and against the Pipeline,” symploke, vol. 31, nos. 1-2 (2023): p. 108.
  6. Bryan D. Cummins, “Only God Can Own the Land”: The Attawapiskat Cree (Toronto: Pearson, 2004), pp. 11-13.
  7. Achille Mbembe, Necropolitics, trans. Steven Corcoran, (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2019) p. 86.
  8. Mbembe, Necropolitics, 86.
  9. Jane Bennett, Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010), p. 38.
  10. Iovino and Oppermann, Introduction, p. 1.
  11. Iovino and Oppermann, Introduction, p. 4.
  12. Karen Barad, Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2007), p. 381; Iovino and Oppermann, Introduction, p. 9.
  13. Sigwan, directed by Alanis Obomsawin (National Film Board of Canada, 2005), 5:35-5:50, hereafter cited parenthetically.
  14. Bennett, Vibrant Matter, p. 37.
  15. Bennett, Vibrant Matter, pp. 37-8.
  16. Stacy Alaimo, Exposed: Environmental Politics and Pleasures in Posthuman Times, (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2016), p. 38.
  17. Bennett, Vibrant Matter, p. 21.
  18. Bennett, Vibrant Matter, p. 24.
  19. Paula Gunn Allen, The Sacred Hoop (Boston: Beacon Press, 1992).

About The Author

Lloyd Alimboyao Sy is Assistant Professor of English at Yale University, where he teaches and researches American literature and film. His work appears in or is forthcoming at ELH, American Literary History, Early American Literature, Studies in American Naturalism, and J19.

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