Author Archives: Cynthia Coleman Emery

About Cynthia Coleman Emery

Professor and researcher at Portland State University who studies science communication, particularly issues that impact American Indians. Dr. Coleman is an enrolled citizen of the Osage Nation.

The New Normal

My pandemic months were normalized by my spartan wardrobe. I rotated the same three pants over many months—gray then navy and now black—and alternated colored tops for my zoom lectures and staff meetings. Getting dressed was mindless. And normal. Now—as the … Continue reading

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Find the flamingo and you’ll find the lampshade

I broke a lamp when I was moving items on my desk for a home zoom call. The vintage-glass shade hit the wooden table and cracked to bits. I asked my husband where he put the old shade—the one that … Continue reading

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Deb Haaland’s Appointment is Critical

When Joe Biden nominated Representative Deb Haaland of New Mexico to direct the Department of the Interior, social media posts buzzed. My American Indian friends and relatives have been rooting for Haaland for weeks, hopeful a Native American would head … Continue reading

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Creating Meaning in an Age of Disinformation

View Post This week I had an opportunity to be part of a conversation about mass media, disinformation and journalism with media specialists from Morocco and Africa. I was excited to talk with an international group about issues I confronted … Continue reading

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Thanksgiving: Whose Prosperity?

              This week we are studying a confluence of tragedies that signaled a turning point for Native American life at the end of the 1800s.               Our college lessons just happen to fall in the same week as Thanksgiving, and … Continue reading

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Why Resilience Matters

I’m lucky to be alive, and glad to be here—particularly in the throes of a disease that has killed some 227,000 Americans. That’s the entire population of the city of Spokane in Washington or Richmond, Virginia. As one governor said … Continue reading

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Columbus Day: Settling of the New World Drenched with Hype

Some communities—including Portland, where I live—have swapped Columbus Day for Indigenous Peoples Day. And while the two tributes aren’t quite equivalent—one commemorates an individual credited with the sighting of the New World, while the other recognizes Native peoples of the … Continue reading

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The Ghost of Justin Townes Earle

First daughter sent me a video of Justin Townes Earle singing Graceland in a corner of a subway-tiled kitchen. It’s a lovely black and white clip from the German-based, Hamburger Küchensessions, which posts musicians performing live, in a bright, white … Continue reading

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The US Postal Service and the Desperate Quid Pro Quo

My parents took voting so seriously that their actions are etched in memory. When I was little, and before we moved overseas, my mother took me with her to the voting booth in our home town. I realized why, once … Continue reading

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John Lewis and the Portland Connection

 On Sundays I brew my morning tea, read the print copy of the New York Times, listen to Lulu Garcia Navarro on NPR, and tune into my favorite podcasts, including This American Life and Freakonomics. Today I searched for two … Continue reading

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