Emily Bowen Cohen’s mini-comic An American Indian Guide to the Day of Atonement recounts her reunion with her long-lost Native American family and her reflection on the trip over the following Yom Kippur. This week Emily illustrated a three-part comic on her reactions to the #NoDAPL protests at Standing Rock, North Dakota as part of the Visiting Scribe series here on The ProsenPeople.
As I was finishing up this comic, the news arrived that the Army Corps of Engineers would explore alternate routes for the pipeline. I did not celebrate the news. At best, this would be just a pause in the pipeline’s construction. However, I did celebrate seeing so many people — Native and non-Native — rallying behind the Sioux. Going forward, it will be so important to continue to see this passion. I would be so grateful if I heard my Native American family’s concerns reflected in the conversations of my Jewish family.
Emily Bowen Cohen writes memoir-style comics about being Native American and Jewish. She grew up in a small town in rural Oklahoma. Emily received a 2016 Word Artist Grant, a project of American Jewish University’s Institute for Jewish Creativity, to create An American Indian Guide to the Day of Atonement.
Emily Bowen Cohen creates comics that explore intersectional identity. She is Jewish and a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. She uses personal experience to tell stories that examine contemporary American and Jewish culture. Emily grew up in rural Oklahoma and spent her teenage years in suburban New Jersey. She graduated from Harvard University and currently lives in Los Angeles, California.