The Little Old Men spoke of these moves as one might speak of changing camping places, and each organizational step was a step away from the old, just as they walked away from the disorder of the old campsites.
-John Joseph Mathews (Osage)
The purpose of this class is to investigate current American Indian societies through both written and visual materials. The class will begin by interrogating the stereotypes most often associated with American Indians, with the goal of understanding how these are part of the continuing process of colonization. The course will then provide a historical context for understanding the challenges that American Indian nations face today. The last half of the class will be devoted to the processes of nation-building happening in these societies in the 21st century.
The class will be organized around weekly lecture, discussion, and student presentations. In addition to the weekly readings, students will be required to post weekly on the course's sakai page, take two exams, and give a presentation.
Upon completion of this course, students should be able to: 1) critically interrogate the stereotypes associated American Indians; 2) discuss the history and current forces of settler colonialism in the United States; 3) discuss 21st century American Indian processes of nation-building.
The following books can be purchased at University bookstores
Participation (200 points)
Participation in the course is a major component of this class. If you do not attend class or cannot talk articulately about class lectures, weekly film, and the assigned readings, your participation grade will suffer. Class discussion will occur throughout the week, but will be required whenever reading is due. The participation grade will be broken into two parts and graded based on your performance during the two halves of the semester. For excused absences, the professor must be notified ahead of time. You are only allowed three unexcused absence before your participation grade will suffer. For each unexcused absence (over the three allowed) students will be deducted 15 points. For non-participation, students will be deducted 5 points per discussion class.
For 10 of the weeks, starting the third week, students are required to write one discussion question on the in-class lecture, film, and reading assignments due that week. All questions must be posted to the appropriate place (Assignments / Questions Posting) on the course's sakai page by Friday at 9:00am. These questions will not be accepted late and are intended to show student engagement with class material.
Most weeks students will work in small groups to present an assigned film. Students are encouraged to create a visual presentation that provides a context for the film and can include clips or other references the the film itself. The group will also be in charge of leading class discussion about the film and thus should formulate a series of questions related the the film. The entire presentation should consume the 50-minute class period.
Based on the lectures, film, and readings from the first half of the semester, students will complete a short-answer in-class exam. Prior to the exam, students will be given a list of possible questions, from which four will be selected for the exam. Each question will be worth 50 points and should be answered in 250 words (8-10 sentences). One source for these questions will be students' posting. Students must bring their own blank Blue Book to the exam.
Based on the lectures, films, and readings from the second half of the semester, students will complete a short-answer in-class final exam. Prior to the exam, students will be given a list of possible questions, from which five will be selected for the exam. Each question will be worth 40 points and should be answered in 250 words (8-10 sentences). One source for these questions will be students' posting. Students must bring their own blank Blue Book to the exam.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has had a student-administered honor system and judicial system for over 100 years. The system is the responsibility of students and is regulated and governed by them, but faculty share the responsibility. If you have questions about your responsibility under the honor code, please bring them to your instructor or consult with the office of the Dean of Students or the Instrument of Student Judicial Governance at:http://honor.unc.edu. This document, adopted by the Chancellor, the Faculty Council, and the Student Congress, contains all policies and procedures pertaining to the student honor system. Your full participation and observance of the honor code is expected.
Plagiarism is the deliberate or reckless representation of another's words, thoughts, images or ideas as one's own without attribution in connection with submission of academic work, whether graded or otherwise. Students seeking more information are encouraged to take the online plagiarism tutorial. Plagiarism will not be tolerated in this class and will result in a failing grade for the class and suspension for one academic semester. Materials for class assignments should be produced specifically for this class unless prior approval from the professor is granted.
AccommodationsStudents requesting classroom accommodation must first register with Disability Services, Division of Student Affairs. They will provide documentation to the student who must then provide this documentation to me when requesting accommodation.
Week 1 – Logic of Elimination
Weeks 2 – Race
Weeks 3 – Primitive/Modern
Weeks 4 – Gender
Weeks 5 – Culture
Week 6 – Whiteness
Weeks 7 – Federal Indian Policy
Weeks 8 – Sovereignty
Week 9 – Spring Break
Weeks 10 – Midterm
Week 11 – Nationhood
Week 12 – Citizenship
Week 13 – Settlers
Week 14 – Activism
Week 15 – Research
Final Exam (Bring Bluebook)