Stereotypes of Native Americans

We are all familar with the typical stereotypes of Native Americans. We display those promoted by our government prominantly on these pages. The portrait on the Indian Head nickel was largely responsible for the fact that Indians could not get jobs in Hollywood to play Indian parts. They did not look Indian enough! (See the essay by Joseph Marshall III, in On Behalf of the Wolf and the First Peoples, Two Left Moccasins: I Become a Member of the Cinema Tribe.) We are so used to seeing the Land o'Lakes Indian maiden, the various school mascots, mascots of professional sports teams, etc. that we forget what effect these images have on the ideas we have of the people they represent, or on the personal image of the children of these people as they must learn to live in this society. In this regard, we strongly suggest that you read the commentary on this issue by Paul D. Gonzales of San Ildefonso Pueblo.

Here we present a reading list for those who would like to learn about real Native Americans, from Native American writers writing both fiction and non-fiction. We hope you will gain a far better sense of who the people who populated this continent before the invasion that began in 1492 occured.

We will also include a page of links to Web sites which continue the long tradition of Native American stereotypes.

Teachers: Please read the reviews of My Heart Is On the Ground: The Diary of Nannie Little Rose, A Sioux Girl, and The Girl Who Chased Away Sorrow: The Diary of Sarah Nita, a Navajo Girl. New Mexico, 1864, from the Dear America series, Scholastic Books, as well as other popular children's books.

Indian Head Nickel Renaming Ourselves On Our Own Terms:
Race, Tribal Nations, and Representation in Education
by Cornel D. Pewewardy
Indian Head Nickel Fluff and Feathers: Treatment of American Indians in the Literature and the Classroom by Cornel D. Pewewardy
Indian Head Nickel The Pocahontas Paradox: A Cautionary Tale for Educators by Cornel D. Pewewardy
Indian Head Nickel From La Belle Sauvage to the Noble Savage by Cornel D. Pewewardy
Indian Head Nickel The Deculturalization of Indigenous Mascots in U.S. Sports Culture by Cornel D. Pewewardy
Indian Head Nickel History as Written by Native American Authors
Indian Head Nickel Native People as Portrayed in Fiction by Native Writers
Indian Head Nickel Techniques for Evaluating American Indian Websites
Indian Head Nickel Images and Cartoons Addressing Issues from the Native Perspective
Indian Head Nickel Common Themes and Questions About the Use of "Indian" Logos by Barbara Munson
Indian Head Nickel "American Indian" Sports Team Mascots
Indian Head Nickel Teach Respect - Not Racism, The Wisconsin Indian Education Association
Indian Head Nickel Twain's Indians, a discussion of Mark Twain's writings on Indians
Indian Head Nickel Native News Sources Online
Indian Head Nickel Stereotypes Now Online

Indian Head Penny Return to Home

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