Today I’m struggling over issues of American Indian identity and how ways of knowing and being intersect with non-Indian knowledge and science. Since most non-Indians get their information about Indians from films, television, magazines, cartoons, books and the internet, the way controversial issues unfold can tell us a lot about how Indian identity is constructed in social discourse. I’m particularly interested in how issues that invoke “science” play out.
I’ve studied how controversial issues are framed in discourse, including mining on Indian territory and the discovery of Kennewick Man: one of the oldest skeletons unearthed in North America that pitted Indians against anthropologists. I am also very keen on understanding how the role of place shapes Indian-ness.
My interest in framing methodologies has been central to my work since I began the academic journey, and when I’m not writing about Indians, I look at how science, health and environmental issues are framed.
For the blog I’m writing about what I’m discovering during my fellowship with the National Museum of the American Indian. It’s a steep learning curve, listening to experts talk about Indian science and western science, and thinking about the collision of knowledge and ideologies. My goal with the blog is to share what I’m learning and invite your views. Thanks for listening.
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