Academic Catalog

ETHN 4: INTRODUCTION TO NATIVE AMERICAN STUDIES

Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Fall 2022
Units: 4
Hours: 4 lecture per week (48 total per quarter)
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Area VI: United States Cultures & Communities, Area I: Humanities
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Description

An introduction to interdisciplinary ethnic studies examining the history, culture, politics, issues, and contemporary experience of Native peoples. Specific attention to Native racialization, diverse ethnicities, and identities; and to decolonizing methodologies that have erased or misrepresented Native people in scholarship and cultural history. Emphasizes indigenous ways of knowing and being, including storytelling and traditional environmental knowledge, and explores applications to the sustainability of indigenous communities in the 21st century.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Analyze and articulate concepts such as race and racism, racialization, ethnicity, equity, ethno-centrism, eurocentrism, white supremacy, self-determination, liberation, decolonization, sovereignty, imperialism, settler colonialism, and anti-racism as analyzed in Native American Studies.
  2. Examine race and ethnicity as social constructs, emphasizing the resiliency of indigenous peoples' struggle for self-determination.
  3. Analyze the framing of identities within indigenous communities in North America and their historical interdependence.
  4. Apply theory and knowledge produced by Native American communities to describe the critical events, histories, cultures, intellectual traditions, contributions, lived-experiences and social struggles of those groups with a particular emphasis on agency and group-affirmation.
  5. Critically analyze the intersection of race and racism as they relate to class, gender, sexuality, religion, spirituality, national origin, immigration status, ability, tribal citizenship, sovereignty, language, and/or age in Native American communities.
  6. Explain and assess how struggle, resistance, racial and social justice, solidarity, and liberation, as experienced, enacted, and studied by Native Americans, are relevant to current and structural issues such as communal, national, international, and transnational politics (e.g., immigration, reparations, settler-colonialism, multiculturalism, language policies). Critically examine Native American studies through various disciplines such as history, law, sociology, anthropology, archaeology, literature, and the arts which have generated narratives of disappearance and invisibility.
  7. Examine historical and contemporary Native movements in relation to environmental racism.

Course Content

  1. Analysis of complex histories, politics, legal, and social issues confronting indigenous peoples in the contexts of race, racialization, ethnicities, and identities; settler colonialism, U.S. colonization, imperialism, white supremacy, Eurocentrism, and globalization
    1. Knowledge of and sensitivity for Native Americans' way of life, both now and prior to European contact
      1. Diversity of Native American cultures
      2. Technological achievements
      3. Adaptations to the diverse environments of North America
      4. Historical experiences and contemporary issues in the larger Western Hemisphere as well as the U.S.
    2. Colonial policies and objectives developed by Europeans and how those policies led to different outcomes in different territories
      1. Land and labor acquisition
      2. Christian conversion
      3. White supremacy
      4. Removal policies, such as those of the 1830s, including how the canons of construction outlined by the Marshall court in the 1830s defined tribes as domestic dependent nations
      5. Treaty rights and violations
      6. "Civilization" policies
      7. Institutions of missions and rancheria/institutionalized violence
      8. Reservation policies
      9. Termination policies
      10. Confronting military institution
      11. Indian child welfare policies
      12. Boarding school policies
      13. Sterilization policies
    3. Political and legal strategies used by Native peoples to confront the historical legacies of dispossession, genocide, social inequity, and discrimination
      1. Land rights and resistance to colonialism
      2. Indians' use of legal institutions
      3. Indian citizenship and conflict between tribes and State
      4. Political self determination and indigenous political structures, e.g., Iroquois Confederacy; historical development of tribal governments and their current functions
      5. Education policies and Native Scholars
      6. Women's rights movements, including awareness of murdered and missing indigenous women
      7. Native American grave protection and repatriation policies
      8. Casino policies in the United States
      9. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (DRIP) (UN 2007)
  2. Examine race and ethnicity as social constructs, emphasizing the resiliency of indigenous peoples' struggle for self-determination
    1. Differentiation between race and ethnicity, understanding of the power dynamics of racialization within Native American contexts
  3. Analyze the framing of identities within indigenous communities in North America and their historical interdependence
    1. Academic theories of race and racialization (e.g., critical race theory, postcolonial theories, Orientalism, intersectionality)
    2. Institution of family
    3. Native ancestry and federally recognized Indians
    4. Inter- and intra-group conflicts
    5. Indigenous migrants
    6. Cultural diversity of Native Americans
    7. Tribal sovereignty and Sovereign Nations
    8. How indigenous people identify and organize themselves, such as tribal identification, intertribal identities and organizations, and globally (the Fourth World concept)
    9. The evolution of tribal citizenship as a specific category of personhood within the United States and how this racial/ethnic identity differs from that of other communities of color
  4. Examine indigenous theory and indigenous intellectual traditions that have redefined Native peoples' scholarship and understanding of Native American issues with an emphasis in advocating for self determination
    1. Familiarity with research trends and new directions in Native American studies
    2. Clear and effective writing about the experiences of Native American peoples
  5. Evaluate Native American identities as they intersect with gender, sexuality, blood quantum, tribal membership, class, religion, spirituality, age, ability, and other positionalities of marginalization
    1. Theories of gender identity and sexual orientation
    2. Socioeconomic class, Marxian theories
    3. Religion and spirituality
    4. Ableism and ageism
  6. Explain and assess how struggle, resistance, racial and social justice, solidarity, and liberation, as experienced, enacted, and studied by Native Americans, are relevant to current and structural issues such as communal, national, international, and transnational politics (e.g., immigration, reparations, settler-colonialism, multiculturalism, language policies). Critically examine Native American studies through various disciplines such as history, law, sociology, anthropology, archaeology, literature, and the arts which have generated narratives of disappearance and invisibility
    1. Stereotypes about Native Americans and how and why these images became popular over the years
    2. Narratives of indigenous empowerment in the context of colonial domination as a counterpoint to traditional colonial narratives
    3. Connections between Native creative expression and contemporary Native American issues
      1. Religious, spiritual, philosophical practices, such as the Ghost Dance
      2. Indigenous languages and their preservation
      3. Sacred Sites
      4. Modern indigenous political art movement, such as rap and dance
      5. Visual arts
      6. Music
      7. Literature
  7. Environmental considerations
    1. Cultural resource management, such as land and water care, deforestation
    2. Climate change
    3. Sustainable agriculture
    4. Foodways, e.g., Native seeds and food protection movements, decolonizing diet
    5. Water rights and fish kill
    6. Mining and fracking
    7. Nuclear waste
    8. Protection of Sacred Sites movements
    9. Geographical/regional land resources and movements, e.g., Mauna Kea protests

Lab Content

Not applicable.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. When taught on campus, no special facility or equipment needed
2. When taught virtually, ongoing access to computer, internet, and email

Method(s) of Evaluation

Critical papers
Class presentations
Reading journals
Midterm examination
Final examination
Social justice/service learning project

Method(s) of Instruction

Readings of multidisciplinary texts from fields including history, social and political sciences, literature, cultural studies
Viewing and analyzing various media regarding contemporary issues
Viewing/observing/hearing cultural artifacts, including art, performance, film, theater, music
Class discussion on relevant topics
Writing analytical responses to course materials
Actively engaging in social justice/service learning
Guest speakers
Field observation and field trips
Collaborative learning and small group exercises
Discussion of course topics and videos in relation to real life examples drawn from students' experiences and observations

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

De Leon, Jason. The Land of Open Graves: Living and Dying on the Migrant Trail. 2015.

Gilio-Whitaker, Dina. As Long as Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice, from Colonization to Standing Rock. 2019.

Lebo, Susan. Native American Voices. 2016.

Mihesuah, Devon, and Elizabeth Hoover. Indigenous Food Sovereignty in the United States: Restoring Cultural Knowledge, Protecting Environments, and Regaining Health, Vol. 18 (New Directions in Native American Studies Series). 2019.

Roberts, David. The Pueblo Revolt. 2005.

Tuhiwai Smith, Linda. Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples (3rd ed.). 2021.

Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States. 2014.

Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. Not "A nation of immigrants": Settler Colonialism, White Supremacy, and A History of Erasure and Exclusion. 2021.

Texts listed older than five years are awaiting new editions; however, information in these older editions is current.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Reading multidisciplinary texts from fields including history, social and political sciences, literature, cultural studies
  2. Viewing and analysis, including information literacy and media regarding communities and narratives
  3. Attending theater, film, or musical performances, or museums, and responding in writing
  4. Analytical essays on readings
  5. Journal entries
  6. Social justice/service learning project (e.g., Foothill Research and Service Learning Symposium)
  7. Group projects
  8. Reflective essays on personal experiences or interviews

Discipline(s)

Ethnic Studies