Title

This Land is Their Land: Representation of Native Americans in Children’s Educational Materials From 1931 to Today

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Campus where you would like to present

Ellensburg

Event Website

https://digitalcommons.cwu.edu/source

Start Date

15-5-2019

End Date

15-5-2019

Abstract

In this paper, I will examine how Native American peoples have been portrayed in children’s educational textbooks in Washington State. I will use elementary school textbooks, classroom guides for teachers, and educational books for children published over last 90 years to illustrate the lack of information on Pacific Northwest (PNW) Native Americans. The authors of my sources simply do not look at Native Americans. When they do, the native peoples are consistently generalized and racialized, especially with the peoples in the PNW. The existing historiography on native peoples focuses on other parts of the country, those who were most affected by events like the Trail of Tears and first contact on the East coast. Very little information about PNW Native Americans exists even in Washington State history textbooks, and thus important information about the history of the state is omitted. By examining the treatment of Native Americans in history textbooks, I find that this treatment has remained largely unchanged over the last 90 years. Textbooks continue to generalize Native Americans, condensing many tribes into a few sentences and racializing them into one nonwhite category. This treatment is not exclusive to PNW Native Americans and continues to affect marginalized people everywhere.

Faculty Mentor(s)

Marji Morgan

Department/Program

History

Shogren SOURCE.pptx (1107 kB)
Slides for SOURCE 2019 presentation Shogren

Additional Files

Shogren SOURCE.pptx (1107 kB)
Slides for SOURCE 2019 presentation Shogren

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May 15th, 12:00 AM May 15th, 12:00 AM

This Land is Their Land: Representation of Native Americans in Children’s Educational Materials From 1931 to Today

Ellensburg

In this paper, I will examine how Native American peoples have been portrayed in children’s educational textbooks in Washington State. I will use elementary school textbooks, classroom guides for teachers, and educational books for children published over last 90 years to illustrate the lack of information on Pacific Northwest (PNW) Native Americans. The authors of my sources simply do not look at Native Americans. When they do, the native peoples are consistently generalized and racialized, especially with the peoples in the PNW. The existing historiography on native peoples focuses on other parts of the country, those who were most affected by events like the Trail of Tears and first contact on the East coast. Very little information about PNW Native Americans exists even in Washington State history textbooks, and thus important information about the history of the state is omitted. By examining the treatment of Native Americans in history textbooks, I find that this treatment has remained largely unchanged over the last 90 years. Textbooks continue to generalize Native Americans, condensing many tribes into a few sentences and racializing them into one nonwhite category. This treatment is not exclusive to PNW Native Americans and continues to affect marginalized people everywhere.

https://digitalcommons.cwu.edu/source/2019/Oralpres/9