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Native American Literature

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Language Arts And English +1

This is a short unit, intended to reflect various elements of, and stages of, Native American culture and life in North America, including the interaction/domination by those who settled the United States. They are used in cooperation with various representative works of literature. The first picture is used as a brainstorming tool before reading a classic Native American Creation Myth - - "Earth on Turtle's Back." The painting used is " Mamakadendagwad" by Tom Uttech. The second painting introduces the natural conflict arising from forced assimilation ("Wi-jun-jon, Pigeon's Egg Head (The Light) Going to and Returning from Washington").  The third painting, "Ha-tchoo-tuck-knee, Snapping Turtle, a Half-breed." - is helpful in a discussion about stereotypes and offensive terms used to label one another. I will direct students to the painter, and note how there were those who made efforts to document and protect the Natives' way of life. Note interesting facts about Caitlin's background and work. Still, as we know - genocide, forced relocation, and oppression came. Painting will be used to introduce Chief Joseph's "An Indian's View of Indian's Affairs." Students will read an excerpt and discuss use of emotional, ethical, and logical appeals. 

Students will finish the short unit by reading Sherman Alexie's "Superman and Me."



Smithsonian American Art Museum

Cler-mónt, First Chief of the Tribe

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Chief Joseph

National Portrait Gallery