“I welcome you to experience this comic with the warning that it is a brutal, beautiful, and unrelenting story that shows a glimpse of the serene chaos that Deer Woman is.” – Elizabeth LaPensée, Creator of Deer Woman: A Vignette (via the Deer Woman: An Anthology Kickstarter page)
Deer Woman: An Anthology is a new project from Native Realities, co-edited by Elizabeth LaPensée. The comic anthology features more than a dozen indigenous women creators, telling their stories of resistance and healing. In just 24 hours, the anthology has met and surpassed its goal of $6,500 on Kickstarter. It deserves even more.
In the United States, the Indian Law Resource Center reports that “one in three Native women will be raped in their lifetime, and three in five will be physically assaulted. Native women are more than twice as likely to be stalked than other women and, even worse, Native women are being murdered at a rate ten times the national average.”
In Canada, over 3,000 indigenous women have gone missing over the last three decades. A “National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls” was formed in Canada in August 2016.
However, the burden of work has shifted back onto the families of these women: they are required to register their missing or murdered daughters with the inquiry. As of March 2017, there were only 122 names listed in the inquiry’s database.
Deer Woman: An Anthology is born of indigenous women’s resistance to systemic colonial violence: “It is a celebration of spirit, resistance, and hope. It is the stories of Native women surviving and thriving.”
You can read more about the project on the Deer Woman: An Anthology Kickstarter. The campaign runs until August 14, 2017. There are lots of tiers. While I’m eyeing the backer package with a t-shirt, there’s even an option for you to get custom artwork by Elizabeth LaPensée!
It’s 2017 and the time to amplify the voices of indigenous women is now.