Reframing SuicideQueer Diasporic and Indigenous Imaginaries
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Reframing SuicideQueer Diasporic and Indigenous Imaginaries


Abstract What can narratives of suicide tell us about diasporic and Indigenous relationships to the white settler state? This article engages relational critique to examine trans/femme/bisexual South Asian Canadian filmmaker Vivek Shraya's short film I want to kill myself (2017) and queer Cree/Métis filmmaker Adam Garnet Jones's feature film Fire Song (2015). Both films challenge the spectacularity of suicide, effectively situating suicide on a continuum of “slow death.” However, the films also stage distinct relationships between suicide, community, and the state that emerge from diasporic and Native positionalities within a white settler society. Whereas Shraya's diasporic struggle with suicide is alleviated by forging community within settler spaces, Fire Song counters pathologizing depictions of reserve communities by emphasizing resurgent Indigenous practices and their refusal of settler logics.

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