History of Consciousness 80M: "Indigenous Women in the US and Canada"

Joanne Marie Barker, Instructor

Winter Quarter 1998

MW 5:00-6:45 Kresge 321


This course examines the political and economic histories and cultures of indigenous women in the US and Canada in relationship to colonialism, gender and sexuality roles, and race relations within and between indigenous, US, and Canadian nations. Topics include epistemology (feminism, environmentalism), sovereignty struggles, questions of what counts as "tradition" and why that matters, social issues such as domestic violence, and grandmothers.

A wide variety of literature will be read, including Beth Brant's "Writing As Witness" (Mohawk lesbian), Elizabeth Cook-Lynn's "Why I Can't Read Wallace Stegner and Other Essays: A Tribal Voice" (Lakota intellectual), Janet Campbell Hale's "The Jailing of Cecilia Capture" (Coeur d'Alene novelist), K. Tsianina Lomawaima's "They Called It Prairie Light: The Story of Chilocco Indian School" (Creek scholar), Janet Silman's "Enough is Enough: Aboriginal Women Speak Out" (addressing First Nation women's activism), and Luci Tapahonso's "Sáanii Dahataal: The Women Are Singing" (Navajo poet).

Course materials also include a compilation of Native women's music by Rayna Green (Cherokee activist and NMAI director) entitled "Heartbeats: First Nation Women's Music" (1996).

Films/videos to be screened in class include:


For more information, contact the History of Consciousness Department at 459-2757.

Excerpted from History of Consciousness Advance Course Information page by c.r.e. Revised 12/2/97