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Nationalisms and Identities among Indigenous Peoples

Case Studies from North America


Edited By Martina Neuburger and H. Peter Dörrenbächer

This book investigates nationalisms and the emergence of national identities among the Indigenous peoples across North America. It examines the many difficulties which the Native communities have had to face in order to assert themselves as nations, as well as looking at the ambiguity of the term 'nation' within First Nations-government relations. The volume gives a broad perspective on the historical development of Native American nationalism and also explores a variety of political, educational, sociological, cultural and even literary viewpoints. The experiences of the Indigenous peoples are compared with the experiences of other Aboriginal groups across the globe, in order to enrich our understanding of global indigenous nationalisms.
The contributors to this volume represent the perspectives of a variety of different First Nations and a wide range of disciplinary fields, from history, anthropology and political science to communications, law, linguistics and literary studies.
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‘Planting the Seeds of Change’: Indigenous Education, Nation-Building and Democracy in the United States


Increasingly, statistics have shown that the state of Native American student achievement in public schools across the United States is in dire need of reform. Recent studies, such as the National Caucus of Native American State Legislator’s 2008 report entitled Striving to Achieve: Helping Native American Students Succeed, expose national crisis, revealing that Native American students are ‘237% more likely to drop out of school’ (2008: 5) than non-Native students. Naturally, Indigenous grassroots movements aimed toward addressing the educational processes shaping their communities and futures are simultaneously increasing in the US. Bringing alternative realities to light in the educational sphere of American society, such movements perhaps have the potential to initiate change not only with regard to Indigenous nation-building, but with regard to collective societal perceptions of democracy as it stands today in the United States. The awareness of alternative realities and perceptions of history initiated through the increasing voices of Indigenous peoples and minorities in mainstream education and academia has given rise to many questions which remain unanswered. Can opposing truths and contesting histories be honoured in formal education settings and if so, how? Furthermore, what do these opposing truths tell regarding the nature of democracy in the USA?

The incorporation of Indigenous voices in mainstream academic thought and discourse increasingly presents challenges to the US national narrative propagated through formal education. With increasing presence, such voices are collectively challenging the Eurocentric nature of national mythology as propagated through formal educational settings. ← 71 | 72 → Accordingly,...

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