Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version



Great Plains Quarterly 33:1 (Winter 2013)


© 2013 Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska-Lincoln


This thematic collection exploring Last Stand paintings by white and First Nations artists has three origins. As Denzin notes, it extends his 2008 collection, Searching for Yellowstone: Race, Gender, Family, and Memory in the Postmodern West, also published by Left Coast Press. Both books gather Denzin’s efforts to involve himself reflexively with the West. Spurred by an engagement with a politics of representation, Denzin locates Custer on Canvas in relation to the “performance turn” and its “new writing practices.” A third origin is personal: Denzin’s effort to engage memories that reach from childhood into contemporary, professional encounters. One in particular that provides narrative direction is a question posed by Denzin’s granddaughter viewing two Last Stand paintings at the Whitney Gallery of Western Art in Cody, Wyoming: why do they represent events differently?