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American Indian Women of Proud Nations

Essays on History, Language, and Education


Edited By Cherry Maynor Beasley, Mary Ann Jacobs and Ulrike Wiethaus

This multidisciplinary collection of nine previously unpublished essays presents new research in three interlocking domains: tribal history with a special emphasis on Native women in the Southeast, language revitalization efforts and the narrative knowledge inherent in indigenous oral culture, and traditional educational systems in the context of the ongoing colonization of American Indian educational practices and values. This volume highlights Southeastern Indian issues and demonstrates the unique situation of women in tribes lacking (full) federal recognition or a more inclusive and multidisciplinary discussion of Native women in more than one tribal nation. Southeastern themes are linked with topics of concern by other tribal nations to show commonalities and raised awareness about the central experiences and contributions of Native women in the encounter and ongoing struggle with Euro-American systems of oppression and cultural erasure.
This book spans the full gamut from naming women’s experiences of historical trauma to their ongoing efforts at preserving and rebuilding their Native nations. The collection of essays is distinctive in its Indigenous hermeneutics in that it insists on a holistic view of time and place-based knowledge – the past still fully affects the present and gives the present depth and meaning beyond the linear flow of time.
This book also features American Indian and non-American Indian scholars who are well known in American Indians studies, scholars beginning their career and scholars who, while not experts in American Indians studies, are considered experts in other disciplines and who recognize the unique attributes of Southeastern American Indian nations.
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The Elder Teachers Project: Finding Promise in the Past


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The Elder Teachers Project

Finding Promise in the Past


In America, the practice of segregating educational institutions on the basis of race has a long and cumbersome history. Three important cases, two of which are regarded as landmark, bear out this fact. In 1849, the future U.S. Senator Charles pleaded the earliest recorded segregation case before the Massachusetts Supreme Court. Although unsuccessful in his arguments, he asserted that segregating the schools in Boston degraded the entire African American race (Davis, 2014). In an opposing view, influential Chief Justice Lemuel Shaw asserted that Boston’s separate schools possessed equal facilities and declared that any attempt to integrate the students would only increase racial prejudice.

Nearly fifty years later, in 1896, a similar attempt to dismantle the principle of “separate but equal” made its way to the Louisiana Supreme Court and later to the U.S. Supreme Court. Known as Plessey vs. Ferguson, the high court’s decision safeguarded the rights of states, municipalities, and private companies to provide separate transportation accommodations for white and African American passengers. This ruling later extended to public facilities, churches, cemeteries, restaurants, and other public accommodations (Kurland, 1975). As Mary Ann Jacobs’ study in this volume demonstrates in depth, the term Jim Crow is commonly associated with these legally sanctioned acts of segregation.

Evidence of the Plessey ruling resonates in the stories of the seven elder teachers presented...

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