The Hilda Neatby Prize English Article
Carmen J. Nielson, “Caricaturing Colonial Space: Indigenized, Feminized Bodies and Anglo-Canadian Identity, 1873-94,” The Canadian Historical Review, vol. 96, no 4 (December 2015), p. 473-506.
Carmen J. Nielson’s “Caricaturing Colonial Space: Indigenized, Feminized Bodies and Anglo-Canadian Identity, 1873-94,” offers a superb illustration and provocative analysis of the visual trope of the indigenized and feminized body in Canada’s popular satirical magazine, Grip. In this fascinating account of nation, gender, and racial embodiment as featured in late nineteenth-century political cartoons and caricatures, Nielson provides her readers with insights on how to construct and deconstruct an intricate narrative using cultural theory and extensive primary sources. This study is a remarkable commentary on the social and political force of visual culture in creating gendered and racialized bodies as colonial projects that were synonymous with nation building, particularly in Western Canada and the Northwest Territories. In so doing, Neilson shows skillfully that the use of the indigenized and feminized body to represent Canada visually faded into whiteness once the nation’s status under British rule was secured.