White Allies, Let’s be Honest about Decolonization

White Allies, Let’s be Honest about Decolonization

Yes, The Decolonization Issue, April 2018. Indigenous environmental movements in North America are among the oldest and most provocative—from the Dish With One Spoon Treaty between Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee peoples to the Mni Wiconi (“Water Is Life”) movement of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. As a Potawatomi environmental justice advocate, I often get asked by other environmentalists in the U.S. to share my views on what they can do to be good allies to Indigenous peoples. Those who ask usually identify themselves as being non-Indigenous, white, and privileged. They are U.S. settlers: people who have privileges that arise from the historic and ongoing oppression of Indigenous peoples.

Decolonization is not a Metaphor

Decolonization is not a Metaphor

Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society, 2012. Our goal in this article is to remind readers what is unsettling about decolonization. Decolonization brings about the repatriation of Indigenous land and life; it is not a metaphor for other things we want to do to improve our societies and schools. The easy adoption of decolonizing discourse by educational advocacy and scholarship, evidenced by the increasing number of calls to “decolonize our schools,” or use “decolonizing methods,” or, “decolonize student thinking”, turns decolonization into a metaphor. As important as their goals may be, social justice, critical methodologies, or approaches that decenter settler perspectives have objectives that may be incommensurable with decolonization.

Reclaiming Native Truths

Reclaiming Native Truths

A Project to Dispel America’s Myths and Misconceptions. Reclaiming Native Truth is a national effort to foster cultural, social and policy change by empowering Native Americans to counter discrimination, invisibility and the dominant narratives that limit Native opportunity, access to justice, health and self-determination. Reclaiming Native Truth’s goal is to move hearts and minds toward greater respect, inclusion and social justice for Native Americans.

Yale Indian Papers Project

Yale Indian Papers Project

“In collaboration with Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study and the Massachusetts Archives, the editors of the Yale Indian Papers Project are pleased to announce an award from the Mellon Foundation’s Council on Libraries and Information Resources (CLIR). Under the auspices of CLIR’s Digitizing Hidden Special Collections and Archives Program approximately 4,500 manuscripts held at the Massachusetts State Archives will be imaged and made available to the public on two digital platforms, the Yale Indian Papers Project’s New England Indian Papers Series and Harvard Radcliffe’s Digital Archive of Native American Petitions Project.  These materials, the majority of them petitions, date from the 17th century through the mid-19th century and document the lives of many in the Indian communities of the colonies of Plymouth, Massachusetts Bay, and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Princeton University Land Acknowledgements

Princeton University Land Acknowledgements

“Princeton seeks to build relationships with Native American and Indigenous communities and nations through academic pursuits, partnerships, historical recognitions, community service and enrollment efforts.  These communities and nations include the Lenni-Lenape people, who consider the land on which the University stands part of their ancient homeland.”

University of Connecticut Land Acknowledgement Statement

University of Connecticut Land Acknowledgement Statement

“All land in the State of Connecticut was once Native territory, which is why it is our duty to acknowledge that the University of Connecticut a land grant institution, is existing on Native land. It is important to understand the long-standing history that has brought you to reside on the land and to seek to understand your place within that history. Land acknowledgments do not exist in the past tense or historical context: colonialism is a current ongoing process, and we need to build our mindfulness of our present participation. It is also worth noting that acknowledging the land is Indigenous protocol.”