Jimmie Durham: At the Center of the World
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Anne Ellegood: Pocahontas's Underwear grew out of Durham finding some costumes that had been used by a performer that lived in his neighborhood.

Narrator: Anne Ellegood is Senior Curator at the Hammer, and organized this exhibition.

Anne Ellegood: Durham has always been incredibly critical of the way that American Indians have been portrayed in mainstream media, particularly Hollywood and the film industry. His concern here is that Pocahontas has been portrayed through these various mythologies, almost as a fetish object. Thinking about how objects get incorporated into museums, into their collections, and displayed in museums that can become fetishized in some sense, removed from their original context and the way that they're intended to be used. In this case, I think what he's doing is talking about the reduction of a complex figure like Pocahontas to essentially a sexualized figure, one who is most characterized by her supposedly voluntary marriage to a British man.


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