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Native American history



  • The Reconstruction Origins of "Black Wall Street"

    by Alexandra E. Stern

    Understanding Tulsa's Black Wall Street as a product of the rise and fall of Reconstruction helps to think more productively about how the Tulsa massacre speaks to the policy problems of racial justice. 



  • Cherokee Nation Policies after the Civil War Show that Reparations Work

    by Melinda C. Miller

    Black Freedmen and their families who were able to claim land under treaties made by the Cherokee Nation were much better able to acquire and retain land than African Americans elsewhere, suggesting that the failure of the Reconstruction-era government to advance a reparation policy was a missed opportunity to advance racial justice.



  • Some Representations of Native Americans Erase their History

    by Hayley Negrin

    "Visibly racist and inaccurate representations of Indigenous people in public spaces send a message to Indigenous people everywhere that they are not in control of their own destiny, that they are not permitted to define themselves. The process of conquest continues."



  • What Doomed a Sprawling City Near St. Louis 1,000 Years Ago?

    New research shows little evidence that the civilization centered around Cahokia in the Mississippi valley caused its own demise by environmental mismanagement, indicating that perhaps "stories of great civilizations seemingly laid low by ecological hubris may say more about our current anxieties and assumptions than the archaeological record."



  • Tribes Want Medals Awarded for Wounded Knee Massacre Rescinded

    "To date, the nation has awarded more than 3,500 Medals of Honor, including about 400 to soldiers who fought during campaigns against Native Americans.... no medals awarded for service in the Indian campaigns have been revoked."



  • The Fruit of Power

    Raoul Peck's documentary "Exterminate All The Brutes" considers not just the history of settler colonialism, but the epistemology of history in contexts where the powerful seek to shape knowledge. 



  • Return the National Parks to the Tribes

    by David Treuer

    "The idea of a virgin American wilderness—an Eden untouched by humans and devoid of sin—is an illusion" that has hidden the forced removal of Native people from the lands converted to national parks. Native people should tend and protect the land again.



  • Don’t Cancel John Muir (But Don't Excuse Him Either)

    Reckoning with John Muir's legacy of racial prejudice isn't just about imposing moral purity, it's about rethinking the conservation movement to include the broad coalition of humanity needed to protect natural resources. 



  • As the Country Reckons with Race, Will Tribal Nations Lead the Way?

    by Alaina E. Roberts

    The decision of the Cherokee Nation to accept obligations conferred by treaty to honor the citizenship claims of descendants of Black people enslaved by the Cherokee accepts reckoning with past injustices as a tribal strength instead of a liability. 


  • America Does Have an "Original Sin": A Response to James Goodman

    by Joshua Ward Jeffery

    "Original Sin" is a fit metaphor for longstanding inequities in American society, but it's important to understand that the original sin is settler colonialism and the seizure of indigenous land, which American civic religion has been all too willing to accommodate. 


  • Why Deb Haaland Matters

    by Michael Leroy Oberg and Joel Helfrich

    New Interior Secretary Deb Haaland's nomination signals a hopeful turn for "those who value the environment and appreciate the 172-year long historic relationship between Interior and America's Native Nations."



  • John Muir in Native America

    by Rebecca Solnit

    John Muir's conservationist vision erased the historical and ongoing presence of indigenous people on the land. Can the environmental movement and the national parks change direction?