UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Encountering the K’I’s A’ums : reinterpretations of the spirit quest in three 21st-century Kwakwaka’wakw narratives Frim, Daniel Joseph


This thesis examines three 21st-century Kwakwaka’wakw narratives that resonate with the notion of the spirit quest. It focuses on the ways in which these narratives give voice to reinterpretations of the spirit-quest typology in order to comment on contemporary cultural concerns. Unlike in most older Kwakwaka’wakw spirit-quest stories, the protagonists of these narratives do not obtain supernatural items, prestigious names, or ceremonial rights. Instead, the gifts they receive are faith in indigenous oral traditions and knowledge of Kwakwaka’wakw culture. By reinterpreting the spirit-quest typology in this manner, the stories highlight the importance of faith and education for the continued vitality of cultural transmission.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada