“Why You Can’t Teach U.S. History without American Indians”
Newberry Library, Ruggles Hall, March 29-30, 2013
For generations U.S. historians wrote the nation’s story as if Indians did not exist, or at best, they marginalized Indian peoples as unimportant actors in the national drama of revolution and democratic state formation. Despite the large number of faculty trained in American Indian history very little has changed and most college level students who enroll in large survey courses in U.S. history learn about Indians during the initial stages of encounter and then, Indians are often depicted as succumbing to epidemic diseases or being pushed off their lands by westward expansion.
The mission of this colloquium is to change how historians teach U.S. history. Today, we are fortunate to have a large number of faculty who teach American Indian Studies and the knowledge base that these scholars possess is profound, thoroughgoing, and expansive. These new perspectives need to be better incorporated into the interpretation and writing of history. Repeatedly, we hear faculty proclaim that they would include Indians if they were more central to mainstream history. This seminar intends to challenge that perspective and to provide a new expanded resource for college level faculty.
In March of 2013, the Newberry Consortium in American Indian Studies invites scholars to attend a seminar at the Newberry Library in Chicago to present papers that suggest how Indians can be better integrated into the way we teach and study US history. We encourage abstracts that address a broad range of topics and that address how certain events in United States history lend themselves to counter-interpretations that include Indians.
We hope that this seminar will provide a public, academic forum for new interpretations of past events, from an Indian perspective, and we plan to publish selected papers in a volume that will be geared toward classroom teaching. We also hope to create a web site for the faculty who teach courses in American Indian Studies and US History to post syllabi and engage in a public forum where faculty who wish to develop similar courses can draw on this reservoir of experience.
Please submit a 200-300 word abstract of your proposal by July 15, 2012
to *firstname.lastname@example.org*. . We will notify all potential recipients
of their acceptance by August 15th. Papers of 7,000 to 10,000 words in
length will be mailed to the Newberry Library, Chicago, Illinois by
March 1, 2013 and will be distributed in advance to seminar
participants. They will be presented at a scholarly colloquium on March
29th - 30th, 2013.
McNickle Center for American Indian and Indigenous Studies
The Newberry Library
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