It has been 186 years since the Indian Removal Act was passed by Congress during Andrew Jackson’s presidency. The way other people view Native Americans, particularly the Choctaws and Chickasaws, has changed drastically over time; but how has that changed the way Native Americans view themselves. I plan to explore what it meant to be Native American at the time of Indian Removal and compare it to what it is believed to mean to be Native American today. I plan to look at the cultural attitude that was in place at the time of removal and how the Native Americans reacted and compare it to modern day opinion.
Native Americans have been neglected, abused, and tormented since the 1700’s when their land was abruptly invaded by Europeans. Europeans declared this “unknown” territory to be their property from then forward and did anything and everything to make sure this would happen. This included forced assimilation, where Natives were stripped of their cultural traditions and forced to assimilate to an english speaking, westernized culture (McLeigh, 2010). This included taking children from their families and sending them to boarding school to learn a new language, new cultural traditions, and new religious practices. Starting in 1860 and lasting until 1970, children were taken from their families at a young age and often lost touch with their family
Native Americans have existed in the different regions-the plains, mountains, marshes- of the North American continent- long before the United States existed. Yet, most were not treated with the respect and dignity that the white American settlers were given. Viewed as outlandish and savage by white settlers, series of negotiations to “correct” the Indian way of life were implemented- through forced relocation, war, and assimilation into white culture. Those who stood up against the American government were viewed as beacons of hope by their fellow Native Americans. Many Native American traditions still exist today, but unfortunately most of them have been lost along with their people.
Racism towards Native American tribes and individuals have been found throughout mainstream media. From nationally broadcasted sports games to popular Hollywood movies, Native Americans people have been stereotyped and/or culturally appropriated. Many examples of these stereotypes are blatant and have been portrayed for in the media for decades.
When one typically thinks about a Native American, they picture this ideological representation of a Native American as depicted by popular culture. Native Americans are underrepresented on television, in books, in news, and all other forms of media. We, as a society, have chosen a path of ignorance in which we have chosen not to educate ourselves or our future generations on the true culture of Native Americans. We have ignored the negative impacts of using mascots such as “Redskins” and instead let it serve as a stereotype to fill our heads with unrealistic views and understandings of Native American culture. The resulting misconceptions leave many Native American students with a feeling of inferiority and questioning their self-worth.
Since the arrival of the Europeans in 1492 the Native American has systematically been dehumanized, decivilized and redefined into terms that typify a subordinate or minority role, restricted life opportunities persist today as a result.
In conclusion the oppression of Native Americans is an often overlooked subject. It's important to learn about this and be aware of it because many Native Americans still live on reservations. Their oppression has not yet dissipated completely and not until recently, as recently as 1962, were they allowed to vote in every state. So we must be well informed in order to continue to dissipate Native American oppression and try to correct the mistakes of the
How can counselors work to lessen the effects of racism and discrimination that have impacted Native Americans and Asian Americans?
Another issue is how Native Americans internalize the stereotypes that are forced upon them. In a study conducted by Fryberg, Markus, Oyserman, and Stone (2008), they found three common stereotypes of Native Americans in mass media: Spiritual people who are in tune with nature, warriors, or people with stereotypically bad outcomes, such as alcoholism. It is important to note that not all of these stereotypes are negative, and in fact a few of them are positive. What Fryberg et al. (2008) found, however, was that regardless if the stereotype was seen as positive or negative, all three of those variations caused harm in the form of “students’ feelings of personal and community worth, and achievement-related possible selves” (p. 216). It did
From its birth, America was a place of inequality and privilege. Since Columbus 's arrival and up until present day, Native American tribes have been victim of white men 's persecution and tyranny. This was first expressed in the 1800’s, when Native Americans were driven off their land and forced to embark on the Trail of Tears, and again during the Western American- Indian War where white Americans massacred millions of Native Americans in hatred. Today, much of the Indian Territory that was once a refuge for Native Americans has since been taken over by white men, and the major tribes that once called these reservations home are all but gone. These events show the discrimination and oppression the Native Americans faced. They were, and continue to be, pushed onto reservations,
A Native Americans identity is deeply rooted in his culture, “it’s a particular way one feels about oneself and one’s experiences as an American Indian or tribal person” (Horse 65). Without his Native American culture, a person can feel lost in the world, disconnected from everything. Throughout history, there have been moments where Native Americans were forced to lose part or all of their culture, of their identity. There was the termination era in the 1950’s and Indian boarding schools that both were ways to strip Native Americans of their culture. In Joy Harjo’s poem, The Woman Hanging from the Thirteenth Floor Window, the woman hanging experiences the termination era. In Sherman Alexie’s book, Reservation Blues, Junior Polatkin experiences the lasting effect boarding schools have on Indians. In LeAnne Howe’s book, Miko Kings, Lena learns that you can always come back from to your Native identity.
Our nation’s history has been deep rooted in the conflict involving Native Americans, ever since the beginning of America and it is one hard to get rid of even as the days go by. The impact of colonialism can be seen in Native American communities even today, and it can only be understood through a cultural perspective once you experience it. Aaron Huey, who is a photographer, went to Pine Ridge reservation and it led him to document the poverty and issues that the Sioux Indians go through as a result of the United States government’s long term actions and policies against them. One must question all sources regarding these topics because there is a lot of biased and misinformation about Native American struggles, and sometimes schools do not thoroughly teach the truth so students can get an insight. There are also different sociological perspectives in this conflict, along with many differing opinions on how to approach the problem and deal with it. This is where ideas clash because people believe their views are right regarding how to handle it.
Native Americans have felt distress from societal and governmental interactions for hundreds of years. American Indian protests against these pressures date back to the colonial period. Broken treaties, removal policies, acculturation, and assimilation have scarred the indigenous societies of the United States. These policies and the continued oppression of the native communities produced an atmosphere of heightened tension. Governmental pressure for assimilation and their apparent aim to destroy cultures, communities, and identities through policies gave the native people a reason to fight. The unanticipated consequence was the subsequent creation of a pan-American Indian identity
The Native Indian history of violence and debasement changed their views and self-image as well. This change later affects how they adapt to American culture and education after being dissuaded from embracing their own for so long. The violence and indifference shown towards the Native Americans during the “Trail of Tears” contributed greatly to this change. In this dreadful journey, Natives of all kinds were forced off
Many races are unjustly victimized, but Native American cultures are more misunderstood and degraded than any other race. College and high school mascots sometimes depict images of Native Americans and have names loosely based on Native American descent, but these are often not based on actual Native American history, so instead of honoring Native Americans, they are being ridiculed. According to the article Warriors Survive Attack, by Cathy Murillo (2009) some “members of the Carpentaria community defended Native American mascot icons as honoring Chumash tradition and the spirit of American Indian Warriors in U.S. history and others claimed that the images were racist stereotypes” (Murillo, 2009). If people do not attempt to understand