Call Number: Valley City State University Lower Level (975.00497 R917s )
Publication Date: 2010-05-01
Since 1789, the United States has had an ''Indian problem.'' Since 1492, the Indians have had a colonial problem. It¿s the same problem.
The two sides of the problem typically relate to each other from their respective defensive crouches, and particularly the Indian side has been too fearful, in this atmosphere, to engage in constructive self-criticism. We demand self-determination while knowing in our private interactions that our tribal governments are not handling the degree of self-determination we have now in a way that satisfies most of the governed.
Sequoyah Rising is the first book to address the democracy deficit in tribal governments directly but from an Indian point of view. Other attempts to deal with the question have typically been by non-Indians intent on portraying tribal governments as bastions of racial privilege and having as their object not reform but destruction.
If democratic theories underlying the US Constitution have American Indian origins, this book argues, Indians should be able to govern themselves in the 21st century in a democratic and transparent manner.
Nothing written here is to absolve the US government from responsibility for the homicides, the thefts, and the broken promises, and much of that ignominious history is recounted. However, the purpose is to help Indian nations do the best they can with what they have, understanding that the most important milestone towards a return to freedom will be an end to dependence. In the Supreme Court, the rights of Indians have proceeded in the opposite direction from the rights of other minorities, becoming less intellectually coherent and less protective of Indian rights whether asserted individually or collectively. The famous cases that memorialize the victories of the mainstream civil rights movement simply have no analogs in federal Indian law. Therefore, it will probably be necessary at some point to win our freedom the same way the former slaves did, by exhibiting the courage demanded by militant nonviolence.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (810.9897 H42 )
Publication Date: 2000-06-13
Here First is an important new collection of essays by Native American writers compiled by Arnold Krupat and Brian Swann, the editors of I Tell You Now: Autobiographical Essays by Native American Writers. In Here First, authors such as Sherman Alexie, Greg Sarris, and Elizabeth Woody tell the stories of their lives and their art. Each essay demonstrates the breadth of experience of twenty-seven individuals united in the creative expression of a Native American heritage. Each has a different relation to that heritage, and in describing it through personal and family history, with verse and in anecdotes, the writers give a strong image of the different cultures that have shaped them. This is living history and the kind of collective memoir that makes for fascinating and rewarding reading--one of the most vivid and diverse portraits of Native American culture available today.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (811.54 H225c )
Publication Date: 2015-09-28
In these poems, the joys and struggles of the everyday are played against the grinding politics of being human. Beginning in a hotel room in the dark of a distant city, we travel through history and follow the memory of the Trail of Tears from the bend in the Tallapoosa River to a place near the Arkansas River. Stomp dance songs, blues, and jazz ballads echo throughout. Lost ancestors are recalled. Resilient songs are born, even as they grieve the loss of their country. Called a "magician and a master" (San Francisco Chronicle), Joy Harjo is at the top of her form in Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (811.54 H225c )
Publication Date: 2012-07-09
In this transcendent memoir, grounded in tribal myth and ancestry, music and poetry, Joy Harjo, one of our leading Native American voices, details her journey to becoming a poet. Born in Oklahoma, the end place of the Trail of Tears, Harjo grew up learning to dodge an abusive stepfather by finding shelter in her imagination, a deep spiritual life, and connection with the natural world. She attended an Indian arts boarding school, where she nourished an appreciation for painting, music, and poetry; gave birth while still a teenager; and struggled on her own as a single mother, eventually finding her poetic voice. Narrating the complexities of betrayal and love, Crazy Brave is a memoir about family and the breaking apart necessary in finding a voice. Harjo's tale of a hardscrabble youth, young adulthood, and transformation into an award-winning poet and musician is haunting, unique, and visionary.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.08762 W1544 )
Publication Date: 2012-03-01
In this first-ever anthology of Indigenous science fiction Grace Dillon collects some of the finest examples of the craft with contributions by Native American, First Nations, Aboriginal Australian, and New Zealand Maori authors. The collection includes seminal authors such as Gerald Vizenor, historically important contributions often categorized as "magical realism" by authors like Leslie Marmon Silko and Sherman Alexie, and authors more recognizable to science fiction fans like William Sanders and Stephen Graham Jones. Dillon's engaging introduction situates the pieces in the larger context of science fiction and its conventions. Organized by sub-genre, the book starts with Native slipstream, stories infused with time travel, alternate realities and alternative history like Vizenor's "Custer on the Slipstream." Next up are stories about contact with other beings featuring, among others, an excerpt from Gerry William's The Black Ship. Dillon includes stories that highlight Indigenous science like a piece from Archie Weller's Land of the Golden Clouds, asserting that one of the roles of Native science fiction is to disentangle that science from notions of "primitive" knowledge and myth. The fourth section calls out stories of apocalypse like William Sanders' "When This World Is All on Fire" and a piece from Zainab Amadahy's The Moons of Palmares. The anthology closes with examples of biskaabiiyang, or "returning to ourselves," bringing together stories like Eden Robinson's "Terminal Avenue" and a piece from Robert Sullivan's Star Waka. An essential book for readers and students of both Native literature and science fiction, Walking the Clouds is an invaluable collection. It brings together not only great examples of Native science fiction from an internationally-known cast of authors, but Dillon's insightful scholarship sheds new light on the traditions of imagining an Indigenous future.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.6 G9193d )
Publication Date: 2012-04-01
In this stirring collection of linked stories, Linda LeGarde Grover portrays an Ojibwe community struggling to follow traditional ways of life in the face of a relentlessly changing world. In the title story an aunt recounts the harsh legacy of Indian boarding schools that tried to break the indigenous culture. In doing so she passes on to her niece the Ojibwe tradition of honoring elders through their stories. In "Refugees Living and Dying in the West End of Duluth," this same niece comes of age in the 1970s against the backdrop of her forcibly dispersed family. A cycle of boarding schools, alcoholism, and violence haunts these stories even as the characters find beauty and solace in their large extended families. With its attention to the Ojibwe language, customs, and history, this unique collection of riveting stories illuminates the very nature of storytelling. The Dance Boots narrates a century's evolution of Native Americans making choices and compromises, often dictated by a white majority, as they try to balance survival, tribal traditions, and obligations to future generations.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.6 G9193r )
Publication Date: 2014-09-09
Set in northern Minnesota, The Road Back to Sweetgrass follows Dale Ann, Theresa, and Margie, a trio of American Indian women, from the 1970s to the present, observing their coming of age and the intersection of their lives as they navigate love, economic hardship, loss, and changing family dynamics on the fictional Mozhay Point reservation. As young women, all three leave their homes. Margie and Theresa go to Duluth for college and work; there Theresa gets to know a handsome Indian boy, Michael Washington, who invites her home to the Sweetgrass land allotment to meet his father, Zho Wash, who lives in the original allotment cabin. When Margie accompanies her, complicated relationships are set into motion, and tensions over "real Indian-ness" emerge. Dale Ann, Margie, and Theresa find themselves pulled back again and again to the Sweetgrass allotment, a silent but ever-present entity in the book; sweetgrass itself is a plant used in the Ojibwe ceremonial odissimaa bag, containing a newborn baby's umbilical cord. In a powerful final chapter, Zho Wash tells the story of the first days of the allotment, when the Wazhushkag, or Muskrat, family became transformed into the Washingtons by the pen of a federal Indian agent. This sense of place and home is both tangible and spiritual, and Linda LeGarde Grover skillfully connects it with the experience of Native women who came of age during the days of the federal termination policy and the struggle for tribal self-determination. The Road Back to Sweetgrass is a novel that that moves between past and present, the Native and the non-Native, history and myth, and tradition and survival, as the people of Mozhay Point navigate traumatic historical events and federal Indian policies while looking ahead to future generations and the continuation of the Anishinaabe people.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.6 H8386m )
Publication Date: 2007-09-01
Miko Kings is set in Indian Territory's queen city, Ada, Oklahoma, during the baseball fever of 1907, but moves back and forth from 1969, during the Vietnam War, to present-day Ada. The story focuses on an Indian baseball team but brings a new understanding of the term "America's favorite pastime." For tribes in Indian Territory, baseball was an extension of a sport they'd been playing for centuries before their forced removal to Indian Territory. The story centers on the lives of Hope Little Leader, a Choctaw pitcher for the Miko Kings, and Ezol Day, a postal clerk in Indian Territory who travels forward in time to tell stories to our present-day narrator. With Day's help, the narrator pulls us into Indian boarding schools, such as the historical Hampton Normal School for Blacks and Indians in Virginia, where the novel's legendary love story between Justina Maurepas--a character modeled after an influential Black educator--and Hope Little Leader, begins. Though a lively and humorous work of fiction, the narrative draws heavily on LeAnne Howe's careful historical research. She weaves original and fictive documents into the text, such as newspaper clippings, photographs, typewritten letters, and handwritten journal entries. "LeAnne Howe's Miko Kings is an incredible act of recovery: baseball, a sport jealously guarded by mainstream Anglo culture, is also rooted in Native American history and territory...[Howe's] compelling stories and narratives...expose the political games of the 20th century that Native Americans learned to play for resistance and survival."--Rigoberto González, author (So Often the Pitcher Goes to Water Until It Breaks and Butterfly Boy) LeAnne Howe, an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, is an author, playwright, and scholar. Born and educated in Oklahoma, she has read and lectured throughout the United States, Japan, and the Middle East. Her first novel, Shell Shaker, earned her a 2002 American Book Award and a Wordcraft Circle Writer of the Year in Creative Prose award. In 2004, Shell Shaker was published in French. Howe is a recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities award for research and a Smithsonian Native American internship for research. She has written and directed for theater, radio, and film. Her most recent film project as the narrator/host of Spiral of Fire aired on PBS in the fall of 2006. She is currently an associate professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.54 H6784m )
Publication Date: 1991-11-24
Early in this century, rivers of oil were found beneath Oklahoma land belonging to Indian people, and beautiful Grace Banket became the richest person in the Territory. But she was murdered by the greed of white men, and the Graycloud family, who cared for her daughter, began dying mysteriously. Letters sent to Washington, D.C. begging for help went unanswered, until at last a Native American government official, Stace Red Hawk, traveled west to investigate. What he found has been documented by history: rampant fraud, intimidation, and murder. But he also found something truly extraordinary--his deepest self and abiding love for his people, and their brave past.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.54 H6784p )
Publication Date: 2009-08-17
Raised in a remote seaside village, Thomas Witka Just marries Ruth, his beloved since infancy. But an ill-fated decision to fight in Vietnam changes his life forever: cut off from his Native American community, he fathers a child with another woman. When he returns home a hero, he finds his tribe in conflict over the decision to hunt a whale, both a symbol of spirituality and rebirth and a means of survival. In the end, he reconciles his two existences, only to see tragedy befall the son he left behind.
Call Number: Valley City State University 1st Floor (813.54 V839b )
Publication Date: 1990-06-01
Bearheart, Gerald Vizenors first novel, overturns "terminal creeds" and violence in a decadent material culture. American civilization has collapsed and Proude Cedarfair, his wife, Rosina, and a bizarre collection of disciples, are forced on a pilgrimage when government agents descend on the res0ervation to claim their sacred cedar trees for fuel. The tribal pilgrims reverse the sentiments of Manifest Destiny and travel south through the ruins of a white world that ran out of gas.
Call Number: Valley City State University Lower Level (970.00497 K587i )
Publication Date: 2013-09-05
In The Inconvenient Indian, Thomas King offers a deeply knowing, darkly funny, unabashedly opinionated, and utterly unconventional account of Indian-White relations in North America since initial contact. Ranging freely across the centuries and the Canada-U.S. border, King debunks fabricated stories of Indian savagery and White heroism, takes an oblique look at Indians (and cowboys) in film and popular culture, wrestles with the history of Native American resistance and his own experiences as a Native rights activist, and articulates a profound, revolutionary understanding of the cumulative effects of ever-shifting laws and treaties on Native peoples and lands. Suffused with wit, anger, perception, and wisdom, The Inconvenient Indian is at once an engaging chronicle and a devastating subversion of history, insightfully distilling what it means to be "Indian" in North America. It is a critical and personal meditation that sees Native American history not as a straight line but rather as a circle in which the same absurd, tragic dynamics are played out over and over again. At the heart of the dysfunctional relationship between Indians and Whites, King writes, is land: "The issue has always been land." With that insight, the history inflicted on the indigenous peoples of North America--broken treaties, forced removals, genocidal violence, and racist stereotypes--sharpens into focus. Both timeless and timely, The Inconvenient Indian ultimately rejects the pessimism and cynicism with which Natives and Whites regard one another to chart a new and just way forward for Indians and non-Indians alike.
Call Number: Valley City State University Lower Level (970.00497 W2799m )
Publication Date: 2014-08-12
As Elissa Washuta makes the transition from college kid to independent adult, she finds herself overwhelmed by the calamities piling up in her brain. When her mood-stabilizing medications aren’t threatening her life, they’re shoving her from depression to mania and back in the space of an hour. Her crisis of American Indian identity bleeds into other areas of self-doubt; mental illness, sexual trauma, ethnic identity, and independence become intertwined. Sifting through the scraps of her past in seventeen formally inventive chapters, Washuta aligns the strictures of her Catholic school education with Cosmopolitan’s mandates for womanhood, views memories through the distorting lens of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and contrasts her bipolar highs and lows with those of Britney Spears and Kurt Cobain. Built on the bones of fundamental identity questions as contorted by a distressed brain, My Body Is a Book of Rules pulls no punches in its self-deprecating and ferocious look at human fallibility.
Call Number: Valley City State University Lower Level (973.00497 T726r )
Publication Date: 2013-01-01
Celebrated novelist David Treuer has gained a reputation for writing fiction that expands the horizons of Native American literature. InRez Life, his first full-length work of nonfiction, Treuer brings a novelist's storytelling skill and an eye for detail to a complex and subtle examination of Native American reservation life, past and present. With authoritative research and reportage, Treuer illuminates misunderstood contemporary issues like sovereignty, treaty rights, and natural-resource conservation. He traces the convoluted waves of public policy that have deracinated, disenfranchised, and exploited Native Americans, exposing the tension and conflict that has marked the historical relationship between the United States government and the Native American population. Through the eyes of students, teachers, government administrators, lawyers, and tribal court judges, he shows how casinos, tribal government, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs have transformed the landscape of Native American life. A member of the Ojibwe of northern Minnesota, Treuer grew up on the Leech Lake Reservation, but was educated in "mainstream" America. Treuer traverses the boundaries of American and Indian identity as he explores crime and poverty, casinos and wealth, and the preservation of his native language and culture.Rez Life is a strikingly original work of history and reportage, a must read for anyone interested in the Native American story.