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American Indian Education: Deloria


American Indian Education: Deloria The goal of Indian education has not been education. Indian education has been oriented toward performing other peripheral tasks ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: American Indian Education: Deloria

American Indian Education DeloriaThe goal of
Indian education has not been education. Indian
education has been oriented toward performing
other peripheral tasks of a political and
economic nature (p. 165).
  • Stages of Indian Education
  • Assimilation
  • Pluralism (still with paternalism)
  • Self-Determination

A fundamental consideration behind school
policy was the transfer of Indian real estate to
white hands.Colonial education for Indian people
designed to condition Indian people to surrender
tribally-controlled lands and accept individual
land allotments (Lomawaima 2002 p. 430) After
1887 General Allotment Act, a majority of
students were property owners.
Tom Torlino (Navajo) as he appeared upon arrival
to the Carlisle Indian School, October 21, 1882.
Tom Torlino (Navajo) three years later
Apache children on arrival at the Carlisle Indian
School (Pennsylvania) http//
Apache children at the Carlisle School four
months later. http//
The Contrast Picture From Primitive to
Civilized Assimilationist desires Contrast
Picture tied to Boarding School Experience
Student body assembled on the Carlisle Indian
School Grounds. Photo courtesy of
Richard Henry Pratt established Carlisle
(Pennsylvania) in 1879. Between 1880 and 1902, 25
off-reservation boarding schools were built and
20,000 to 30,000 Native American children went
through the system. That was roughly 10 percent
of the total Indian population in 1900.
Carlisle Indian Industrial School (1879 -
1918) Richard Henry Pratt spent eight years
(1867-1875) in Indian Territory as an officer of
the 10th Cavalry, commanding a unit of African
American "Buffalo Soldiers" and Indian Scouts.
During this time, he was stationed at Ft. Sill,
OK, 60 miles east of the site of the Battle of
the Washita where Black Kettle (Cheyenne) was
killed in 1867. Frustrated by unsuccessful
attempts to 'bring in' the most recalcitrant of
the 'hostiles', the United States instituted a
plan to incarcerate them. 1875-1886 Cheyenne,
Kiowa, Comanche and Caddo Nations, were rounded
up for exile to Fort Marion, Florida. Pratt
jailor Take Indian children from the
reservations, remove them to a school far away
from tribal influences, and transform them.
1879, Pratt had secured permission of the
Secretary of the Interior and Secretary of the
War Department McCrary to use a deserted military
base as the site of his school. Carlisle Barrack,
Pratt was driven by his strong desire to see the
Indian become an imitation of the white man. This
article from the March 18, 1898 school newspaper,
the "Indian Helper" embodies Pratt's
assimilationist philosophy. The author of the
letter evidently has the idea of Indians that
Buffalo Bill and other showmen keep alive, by
hiring the reservation wild man to dress in his
most hideous costume of feathers, paint,
moccasins, blanket, leggins, and scalp lock, and
to display his savagery, by hair lifting
war-whoops make those who pay to see him, think
he is a blood-thirsty creature ready to devour
people alive. It is this nature in our red
brother that is better dead than alive, and when
we agree with the oft-repeated sentiment that the
only good Indian is a dead one, we mean this
characteristic of the Indian. Carlisle's mission
is to kill THIS Indian, as we build up the better
man. We give the rising Indian something nobler
and higher to think about and do, and he comes
out a young man with the ambitions and
aspirations of his more favored white brother. We
do not like to keep alive the stories of his
past, hence deal more with his present and his
future." Pratt is often quoted as saying "Kill
the Indian, save the man". Of the 10,000 Indian
children who attended the Carlisle school over
its 39 year life span, most returned to the
Marshall decision 1832 Though the Indians are
acknowledged to have an unquestionable and,
heretofore, unquestioned right to the lands they
occupy until that right shall be extinguished by
a voluntary cession to our government, yet it may
well be doubted whether those tribes which reside
within the acknowledged boundaries of the United
States can, with strict accuracy, be denominated
foreign nations. They may more correctly,
perhaps, be denominated domestic dependent
nations. They occupy a territory to which we
assert a title independent of their will, which
must take effect in point of possession when
their right of possession ceases. Meanwhile, they
are in a state of pupilage. Their relation to the
United States resembles that of a ward to his
guardian. http//
Chief Justice Marshall of the US. In office
1801-1835 Marshall decision 1832 domestic
dependent nation, ward to guardian
General Allotment Act of 1887 Also known as the
Dawes Act
Dawes Act authorized the President of the US to
survey Indian tribal land and divide the area
into allotments for the individual Indian. Dawes
strongly believed that the ownership of land was
an important process in persuading people to
accept the laws of the government. He therefore
suggested that Native Americans should be granted
land in exchange for renouncing tribal
allegiances. Under the terms of this legislation
family heads received one hundred acres, and each
dependent child 40 acres. This land was held in
trust for 25 years, at the end of which time the
holder was to acquire full title with the right
to sell. http//
Senator Dawes Massachusetts, 1875-1893 en.wikipedi
The practical effect of the Dawes Act
fundamentally changed the way Indians dealt with
their land base and it eventually removed much of
the land from their reservations through private
sales or outright confiscation. "Surplus" land
was then sold off. The result was Native
Americans often found it impossible to make a
living, and so began selling their allotments to
land-hungry farmers and ranchers. In 1881,
Indians held more than 155 million acres. By
1890, they held 104 million acres. By 1900, 77
million acres.
  • Social and legal definitions of native status
  • Are tribes nations or wards? (Marshall decision
    1832 domestic dependent nation, ward to
  • Indian parents, classified as children were
    denied rights of choice in their childrens
  • Diminishment of economic and social opportunities
    for Native students
  • Allotment Act of 1887 meshed with alienation of
    Native corporate land holdings
  • Challenges of placing Native alumni on the job
  • Preparation for Indians as domestics and

Ziewie, four months after her arrivalat
Hampton.(Hampton Archives) http//
Ziewie, a fifteen year old Sioux girlfrom Crow
Creek Agency arrivedat Hampton in 1878.
Assimilation to Pluralism, 1887-1934
  • The Office of Indian Affairs was established
    March 11, 1824, as an office of the Unites States
    Department of War. It became responsible for
    negotiating and holding fulfillment, at least on
    the Native American part, of treaties. In 1849
    the bureau was transferred to the Department of
    the Interior. Office of Indian Affairs re-named
    Bureau of Indian Affairs as of 1947)
  • General Allotment Act of 1887 (Dawes Act) Native
    lands privatized, tribes forced into a
    capitalistic legal system
  • Indian Citizenship, 1924
  • The Meriam Report, 1928 The Problem of Indian
  • Collier, Commissioner of Indian Affairs
    (Roosevelts New Deal), Indian Reorganization Act
    of 1934 formally ended allotment. Pluralist

Indian Reorganization Act of 1934Indian New Deal
  • As a proponent of cultural pluralism and repeal
    of the Dawes Act, Collier directly attacked the
    Bureau of Indian Affairs. Prior to Collier,
    criticism of the Bureau was directed at corrupt
    and incompetent officials and not the actual
    policies implemented. For the next decade Collier
    fought against legislation and policies that were
    detrimental to the well-being of Native
    Americans. Collier's efforts led to a monumental
    study in 1926-1927 of the overall condition of
    Indians in the United States. The results of the
    study became known as the Meriam Report.
    Published in 1928 as The Problem of Indian
    Administration the report revealed failures of
    federal Indian policies and how they had
    contributed to severe problems with Indian
    education, health, and poverty.
  • SEE http//

John Collier (1884-1968)
Meriam Report 1928 be absorbed into the
prevailing civilization or be fitted to live in
the presence of that civilization Collier (IRA
1934) paternalistic New Deal Policy new idea
schools serve needs of Indian students wedded
to old idea federal policy-makers defined those
needs Day schools/off reservation boarding
schools only option available for Indian
students Threat that a high school degree might
enable access to higher education and economic
development Remain an Indian as long as they
remained on their reservation land and did not
compete for jobs
Carlisle Indian School, ca. 1900.Frances
Benjamin Johnston photoCourtesy Cumberland
County Historical Society http//
  • Methodological boundaries expanded
  • Examples
  • Tsianina Lomawaima They Called it Prarie Light
    The Story of Chilocco Indian School
  • Kikapoo Nation Film Another Wind is Moving
    (E97.5.A561 1985)
  • Carlisle Indian School
  • http//
  • Oral history accounts
  • Indian autobiographical accounts
  • Documentary records (letters of Indian students
    and parents)
  • Policy, practice, student experience

Self-Determination (See Burden of Indian
Education Deloria pp. 176-185
  • Indian Education Act of 1972
  • Grants to local Education Agencies
  • Improvement of educational opportunities
    curricula, teacher training, fellowships,
  • grants for adult education, employment
  • Indian Self-Determination and educational
    Assistance Act 1975
  • Federal government contracted services out to
    individual tribes for administration of schools
  • Tribally Controlled Community College Assistance
    Act of 1978

Deloria - Indian Education was never really
conceived as the education of Indians using the
strengths of Indian culture or tradition. Most
programs derived from national programs, Indians
seen as the most needy of American minority
groups (p. 182)
Discussion Points
  • Pan-Tribal Identities - Indianness Beyond
    Tribalness (Strickland interviewed in Another
    Wind is Moving
  • Evidence of Resilience
  • What is Traditional Education? (Medicine,
  • Victimhood or agency? Why go? Why did parents
    send children?