why do people call native americans indians

is an useful word: It refers to the name given to a place or group of people by those outside of the place or group. An exonym is a name, in other words, that foreigners or visitors use. The indigenous people of the United States have been subjected to many different exonyms over the centuries. The terms currently in popular rotation are "Native American," "American Indian" or similar variations. Is there any one correct term to use? explores the question in today's Seeker Daily report. The quick answer is that there is no quick answer. Different people have different preferences regarding terminology in this area. In fact, there are many indigenous people who reject any general term, contending that the cultural diversity of the North America's various tribes cannot be homogenized. As such, many will instead
by tribe name -- such as Navajo or Cherokee. As to how the name "Indian" got introduced in the first place, most people know : Legend holds that Christopher Columbus arrived in the Caribbean thinking he has reached the Indian Ocean. He referred to the indigenous people as Indians, and subsequent settlers repeated the mistake. The term "Indian" has been troublesome ever since.


Many see it as a reminder of the country's brutal colonial past, based on a pejorative understanding of the indigenous culture. By the late 1960s, advocacy groups began using a new name that appropriated the controversial term, calling themselves the. The term also began to emerge during this period. It's since been widely used by those who prefer to eliminate the "Indian" pejorative entirely. Dr. , professor and former chair of the American Indian Studies Department at San Francisco State University, says that no single term is appropriate in all instances when referring to the indigenous peoples of the Americas. "On some days I might say Indian, other days I might say Native," JolivГtte says. "And that's okay, we have to be comfortable in this society with the fact that identities are malleable -- they move, they change as we evolve and get older. " Check out Laura's report for more history and additional perspective from Dr. JolivГtte. -- Learn More: PBS: Washington Post: Native Times: Guests are drawn to the National Museum of the American Indian for a kaleidoscope of reasons and intentions. One is to experience Native cultures, an experience that is enhanced when visitors have an opportunity to speak with staff members face-to-face.


People working at the museumБs welcome desk, as cultural interpreters, in visitor services, and at the resource center all serve on the front lines, meeting, greeting, and answering questions. I am an American Indian and one of these liaisons for the museum. My name is Dennis Zotigh. I am Kiowa, Santee Dakota, and Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo. I grew up receiving cultural knowledge from both my maternal and paternal grandparents. My parents further made sure that I was well acquainted with first-hand knowledge of other, diverse tribal cultures and their aesthetics, across North America. With this rich foundation, I became the director of an internationally known professional Native dance company and traveled to 26 countries representing American Indians. Recognizing my working knowledge, the Oklahoma Historical Society hired me to help develop the Indian gallery of the new Oklahoma History Center as a researcher and historian. While presenting a conference paper at the British Museum in London in 2004, I was approached by co-presenter, Terry Snowball, whoБs now my colleague.


Terry encouraged me to apply for the advisor position for the 2005 National Powwow. I got the job, and my personal Native history began a new chapter. My experience both traveling abroad and speaking daily to guests who visit our museum has shown me that there is a worldwide fascination with Indian cultures. I believe in the philosophy that the only bad question is the one that is never asked. IБve been asked the gamut of questions pertaining to Native culture, from the insulting (a good test for that theory) to the academic and cultural-specific. Beginning with this blog, IБd like to share a series of questions that IБve been asked, give my answers, and invite you to discuss, debate, and add your personal ideas and experiences. The first question is, БWhat do we call you, American Indian or Native American? Б My answer? Ultimately, I would like to be referred to by my tribal names of Kiowa, Santee Dakota, and Ohkay Owingeh! Most Native people also appreciate being associated with their particular tribes. But I know this is difficult. In actuality, the reference of Native American vs. American Indian is largely generational.


My grandparents and other Native elders first referred to themselves by their tribes, although I also heard them less frequently refer to themselves as American Indian. I refer to myself by my tribal affiliation first, but donБt mind being called Indian. The generation younger than mine refers to themselves as Native Americans. Others have followed their politically correct identity. Were you born in the United States? If so, you are technically a native American, a label that literally describes anyone who was born in and remains a citizen of a country in North, South, or Central America. Indian is the term used in federal law. It is also the official term used by major U. S. Indian agencies and organizations, including the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Indian Health Service, National Congress of the American Indians, National Indian Education Association, and National Museum of the American Indian. In modern usage, the legal term Indian usually means an enrolled member of a federally recognized tribe (or one who is eligible to be enrolled in a federally recognized tribe). Please comment and turn this blog into a conversation.

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