Sunday, March 28, 2010

 

American Indians: Some Stereotypes & Realities


STEREOTYPE

"My grandmother was an Indian".
REALITY
Thousands of Americans "wannabe" Indians, but they are not.


STEREOTYPE
Indians are all full bloods.
REALITY
The majority of Indians are of mixed heritage.


STEREOTYPE
All Indians have an "Indian name".

REALITY
Most Indians have only a Euro-American name.
A minority of Indians also have "Indian names."


STEREOTYPE
Most Indians know the histories, languages and cultural aspects of
their own tribe and of other tribes.


REALITY
Few Indians know all cultural aspects of their own tribes, much
less those of other tribes.


Source: Devon A. Mihesuah, American Indians: Stereotypes & Realities, (Atlanta: Clarity Pr., 1996).

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Comments:
Umm, so if most Indians have non-Indian ancestry, Euro-American names, and are ignorant of their tribal cultures then why exactly do we invest so much meaning the fictive distinction between Indian and non-Indian and the two-tier citizenship that goes with it?
 
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