"There was power in a name, and I figured if mine were Elizabeth, maybe the blue eyes and blonde hair would follow. I would look more like her. My mother. She has stories of walking around—me in her arms, my brother in a stroller—and people asking what country we were adopted from. My mother is too polite to say things like, The country of my vagina." "Where I'm Writing From" by Onnesha Roychoudhuri.
"When the lights go out for good, my people will still be here. We have our ancient ways. We will remain."
In the Shadow of Wounded Knee. Along the southwestern border of South Dakota is one of the most poverty-stricken places in the United States—the Pine Ridge Reservation, home of the Oglala Lakota people. After 150 years of broken promises, they are still nurturing their tribal customs, language and beliefs. Via [more inside]
Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey defends his appointment of Sohail Mohammed to the state bench. Sohail Mohammed is New Jersey's first Indian-born Superior Court Judge. "After Christie nominated Mohammed in January for the judgeship, the former federal prosecutor found himself accused of cozying up to Islamic radicals. Mohammed’s confirmation hearing before the state Senate included two hours of grilling, including inquires about Sharia, jihad and Hamas." [more inside]
Twenty-four different accents in just over eight minutes. (NSFW SLYT)
Born 88 years ago in a bear cave in Eastern Oregon, Virginia Beavert now teaches a language with no textbooks, no study abroad programs, and no dubbed TV shows. The only surviving elder of the Yakama who knows the sacred songs and parables of the "Dreamer Religion", Waashat, Beavert researches and teaches Sahaptin (Ichiskíin Sínwit). [more inside]
Many kids read The Education of Little Tree in school, but the author of the book, Forrest Carter, was actually Asa Carter, a staunch racist and charlatan.
War Dances: “I wanted to call my father and tell him that a white man thought my brain was beautiful”. Sherman Alexie doing his thing in The New Yorker, excerpted from his upcoming book (early review; interview 1, 2.)
Faces young and old, mothers and children, dolls; hunting rabbit, making fire, dancing: Archived photographs of Arizona's Indians from the turn-of-the-twentieth. Plus reference materials.
The National Museum of the American Indian opened on Tuesday. Although generally praised, the occasion did draw some mild concern that some groups are under-represented. The museum occupies one of the last few coveted spots on the National Mall. Washington Post collumnist Courtland Milloy comments on the contrast between the opening ceremonies for the museum in the home of the 'Redskins'. And I can't resist throwing in a plug for The Eiteljorg (flash splash screen) which is the only other museum with a partnership with the Smithsonian collection.