Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Scott M. Stevens
Charles Long, Columbus, history of religions, memory studies, Ska-nonh, Syracuse
Arts and Humanities | History | History of Art, Architecture, and Archaeology
The Columbus memorial in Syracuse, New York was erected in the early 1900s by Italian-American immigrants who hoped for inclusion in the American master narrative. Indigenous peoples, on the other hand, have long recognized Columbus as a slave trader and as the person who instigated European colonization in the Americas. Following George Floyd’s murder in 2020, resistance to colonial and Confederate statues gained widespread support. Using Charles Long’s theorization of the circle and the ellipsis, Syracuse’s Columbus Circle can be understood as an interpretive center in material form, underscoring how the maintenance of monuments to colonialism and racism also perpetuate oppressive master narratives. In contrast, the Skä•noñh – Great Law of Peace Center (Syracuse, NY) can be imagined as an ellipsis. Skä•noñh exemplifies a more equitable approach to memorialization that requires dominant centers and their memorial manifestations to change, entering into relationship with marginalized perspectives that challenge their basic ideologies.
Fritzke, Grace, "Columbus [as A] Circle And Skä•noñh As An Ellipsis: A Case Study On Shifting The Interpretive Center In Syracuse, New York" (2021). Theses - ALL. 481.