Contact Us
Sign In / Sign Up for FREE
Go to advanced search...

All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans - Essay Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
It is a sad commentary to viewing all these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans. These items are all put on display for visitors to see but the fact these items are there speak a lot about what happened to their culture, way of life, language and customs. The question a museum visitor need to ask is what happened? …
Download full paper File format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER91.4% of users find it useful
All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans
Read Text Preview

Extract of sample "All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans"

Native Americans 04 November 2009 Introduction It is a sad commentary to viewing all these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans. These items are all put on display for visitors to see but the fact these items are there speak a lot about what happened to their culture, way of life, language and customs. The question a museum visitor need to ask is what happened? How could a once vibrant culture so disappear almost completely? What lead to their demise and extinction? How come the once original peoples have been marginalized in modern society? All these artifacts are testaments to the diminution of a culture that once was mighty. It is like living in history, that is, the very people honored by these museums seem to be a part of the past and not of the present.
It is the equivalent of celebrating something that belonged to a bygone era when these tribes ruled vast areas of America, from the beginning of time to eternity but it was destined to be that way. The museums seem to be an effort by white men to expiate themselves of their sins in dispossessing these people of their ancient lands that had belonged to their ancestors. Once mighty and proud warriors have been reduced to living in reservations as if they have to be segregated on their own land and sometimes eking out a living on marginal land.
A case in point would be the native American Indians in California. They had 300,000 people of different tribes when the first Spanish settlers, soldiers and priests first arrived in the area around 1769. In fact, California had the densest pre-Columbian population anywhere that is north of Mexico yet this almost disappeared by the turn of the twentieth century, less than 20,000 were left, an almost unspeakable tragedy caused by disease, wars and exploitation.
The rapid population decrease led to the disappearance of around 500 distinct tribes (Margolin, 1993) and along with them their way of life, their songs and dances, customs about courtship, marriage, adolescence and growing old. Also lost were their prescribed burning practices that honors their environment, preventing degradation through siltation, floods and landslides. The museum pieces are nothing but pathetic collections of the few remaining items of a lost local culture. Wherever they want, the native Americans fit in with the environment and not the other way around by making natural resources sustainable, whether wildlife game, forests, water resources and the land (Morris, 2006).
There is still hope though. Were it not for a few concerned individuals who deemed it fit to preserve these local cultures, they would have been lost forever. Some institutions like the Smithsonians National Museum of the American Indian had spent money and efforts on preserving and protecting indigenous cultures by reaffirming local beliefs and traditions. It is also a partner of these local communities and help them express their voices and its efforts had been extended to the natives of Hawaii. The Alutiiq Museum is doing the same thing in preserving their 7,500 years old heritage with a modern building in Kodiak, Alaska. There are still a few native American descendants in the US and Canada that managed to preserve their culture, traditions, arts and crafts today.
Cultural anthropology still has a place in modern society because preserving culture is also preserving the values that we hold very dear. Along this line, that was what worried the recently-departed Claude Lévi-Strauss that we might soon have mass civilization instead of the cultural diversity that makes life wonderful. This powerful-thinking French intellectual had worried about a “modern monoculture” which he found disgusting (Rothstein, 2009). We should preserve culture because it is dangerous to ignore, reject, forget or destroy heritage.

Reference List
Margolin, Malcolm. The Way We Lived: California Indian Stories, Songs and Reminiscences. Berkeley, CA: Heyday Books, 1993. Print.
Morris, Ting. Native Americans. Mankato, MN: Black Rabbit Books. 2006. Print.
Rothstein, Edward. “Claude Lévi-Strauss Dies at 100.” The New York Times [online]. Accessed 04 November 2009 from Read More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans Essay”, n.d.)
All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans Essay. Retrieved from
(All These Museum Pieces of the Once-Proud Native Americans Essay)
All These Museum Pieces of the Once-Proud Native Americans Essay.
“All These Museum Pieces of the Once-Proud Native Americans Essay”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans

Cheyenne Native Americans

...Cheyenne Native Americans The Cheyenne and other Red Indian tribes were the first occupants of America long before the arrival of white European settlers in the 16th century. Hence, they are referred to as Native Americans. They form a significant plains tribe and belong to the Algonquian Indian family. The Cheyenne comprise of two tribes i.e. the Tsétsêhéstâhese and the Só'taeo'o. Members of the Algonquian family had a common territory (present day Saskatchewan province) and language. However in the mid 16th century, they began their southwestward migration in pursuit of buffaloes and game. However prior to this, the Cheyenne resided alongside the Missouri river in Minnesota (Native-languages 1). There is evidence that they were ardent...
3 Pages (750 words) Research Paper

Native Americans culture vs. Latin Americans culture

...-ethnical relationship in America (and all over the world): under the impact of immigration from different countries the variety of ethnical groups is increasing. We should not forget that the very racial-ethnical factor had given a special shade civilization to America. It is not surprising that now the problem of assimilation of many ethnical groups is current of importance. It is worth mentioning that a lot of problems for ethnical groups appear in the sphere of education. For example Latin Americans have great difficulties in schools because of weak knowledge in language and culture of Native American population. Immigrants from Latin America are the biggest and rapidly increasing part of ethnical minorities in US population. Usually...
6 Pages (1500 words) Essay

Addiction and Native Americans

Reports by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2001 to 2005 indicate that 11.7% of Native American and Alaska Natives are alcohol-related; in the general population, only about 3.3% is credited to alcohol deaths (Associated Press, 2008). Deaths among Native Americans were mostly due to traffic accidents, alcoholic liver disease, homicide, suicide, injuries, and falls. Alcohol-abuse is also a risk factor in some of the common illnesses found among Native Americans and Alaska Natives like tuberculosis, pneumonia, and colon cancer (Associated Press, 2008). A great percentage (66%) of alcohol-abusers among the native population was below 50 years of age. Drug use and abuse is also increasing in the Native A...
5 Pages (1250 words) Research Paper

Native Americans' music

...Native Music of Washington “We are told by our grandfathers and grandmothers that for as long as there are Indians there will be songs, and as long as there is song there will be Indians. As long as we sing our songs and someone learns them, there will be new Indian people, for song is our survival tool as a people.” (Cliff Sijohn, Spokane and Coeur d’Alene tribes, p. 48). Song has always held great spiritual significance, great power and today it tells us about their unique perspective towards other people, nature, future and such things. A song today is considered a prayer. The song text in Native American music is inclusive of both public and secret pieces. The secret song pieces have been used for sacred purposes and ceremonies alone...
8 Pages (2000 words) Essay

Exploiting the Native Americans

... Why and how did the move West disrupt the lives of Native Americans? In what ways did the settlers exploit Native Americans? Despite notable successes with of colonization in the 1600s, colonists of the West had to go through several stages of inconvenient dealings with the American Indians given the fact that the conquest of America back then was not merely the pursuit of a single powerful nation. Besides the English, the French and the Dutch shared a common goal of establishing colonies in the land primarily inhabited by indigenous people whose way of living significantly differed from the lifestyle and economy of the people of Europe. To learn the means to disrupt the lives of Native Americans, the colonists necessitated having...
1 Pages (250 words) Essay

Native Americans and US

...Native Americans and US In the year 1613, a free sailor working for a Dutch fur trading company was allowed to live and trade among the Native Americans in Manhattan. In 1619, the first 20 blacks, from the Dutch slave traders were bought as workers in the English northern American colony (Hakim, 2002). Bringing of blacks into America became the first step in creating a relationship between the blacks and the Native Americans. Like the African Americans, the American natives were black. When the African slaves escaped from the European colonist, the American natives would hide them. In the year 1622, Native Americans overruled the European colonialist...
1 Pages (250 words) Term Paper

Native Americans in Texas

...NATIVE AMERICANS IN TEXAS Introduction Native Americans in Texas are largely comprised of diverse Indian communities. They established themselves in semi-permanent and permanent settlements, depending on the fending approaches used. The natives mainly comprised of hunters, fishermen and gatherers and therefore, lived in family and tribal groups with common practices, though they mixed up with different communities across different centuries.1 These tribal mixtures involved both Indian communities, as well as, immigrants such as the Europeans. The primitive ancestors are believed to have occupied Texas over thirty five thousand years ago. It is believed that these tribes came from Asia, thus crossing borders to occupy the Northern parts...
8 Pages (2000 words) Research Paper

Native Americans

... 4th September Native Americans Native American religions have persisted in history, though through interactions with other religions and cultures, which have influenced the ancient beliefs, and are reflective of trends in beliefs by other immigrant groups into the America. This paper explains the role of evolution of Native American religions as a microcosm of other religious adaptations through compatibility, commonality in diversity, and common religious goals across religions. One of the ways in which the Native American religions are representative of other immigrant groups’ adaptation is the compatibility that the native religions have exhibited with the other groups’ practices and beliefs. Albanese (36) explains that Native...
1 Pages (250 words) Assignment

Many Nations Native Americans

... Opposition from Eviction The Cherokees are important people not only because they are part of the human race but also are natives of Georgia in United States. The removal of the Cherokees from their ancestral lands by the United States government has elicited sharp reactions from different quarters. There is controversy and suspicion in the manner in which they were forced out of their ancestral land. Their sovereignty was categorically provided under the ruling by the court in 1832 (Worcester v Georgia) but this was not effected by the government. The government has been adamant in protecting this community and their land. There is a group of Cherokee people that want to stay in their homelands spearheaded by Principal Chief John Ross...
4 Pages (1000 words) Essay

Native Americans In Kentucky

.... This leader from the Cherokee tribe whose name translates into “Dragging Canoe”, made a statement referring to the land as “bloody ground”, which the White men translated to mean no-man’s land2. From this remark, white men considered the land as hunting grounds and not native land, a distinction that influenced land ownership in the region. Once the land was regarded as free land, it became a free resource for the new settlers who went ahead to divide the land among them. The arrival of settlers ushered in individual land ownership for settlers and the removal of native tribes from their ancestral land. In contrast, Native Americans had an entirely different approach to land ownership, as land was viewed as communal land held in trust...
10 Pages (2500 words) Research Paper

Do Immigrants Take Away Jobs and Reduce Wages of Native Workers

A considerable portion of the population of the UK is comprised of people who migrated to the country generations back and, fully integrated into the community; they enjoy equal status as their native counterparts. It is the fresh immigrants and their effect that is the subject of this essay.
The principles of Demand and Supply apply to the workforce market, as they do any other market. In a stable economic environment when supply exceeds demand, the prices fall and vice versa. The wage paid to the workforce is its price and includes benefits over and above the basic wage paid. With the influx of employable hands, in the form of immigrants, the supply increases over the demand pushing the prices down. This means that the nati...
6 Pages (1500 words) Essay

All Legislation Referred to in This Problem Scenario is Fictitious

Section 1 of the Act permits the Secretary of State to restrict access to public parks in the interest of public order and allows the Secretary of State to issue an order ‘preventing the reporting of any such restriction in newspapers or on television where he feels that this is 

Section 2 introduces a new system for the licensing of public houses.  Accordingly, all applicants have to demonstrate martial art skills and ensure that their premises are equipped in a way to minimize disturbance of public order.

Section 3 of the Public Order Act 2006 empowers a newly set up Licensing Agency to award grants to pub licensees who are licensed under the Act. Licensees are invited to apply for grants in...
11 Pages (2750 words) Case Study

The Culture-Centred Approach to Counselling Presumes that All Counselling Is Cultural

While much mainstream social research aims for universal explanations - that is to look for truths which apply across cultures- it has become increasingly difficult to distinguish valid universals from cherished cultural values. The search for universals makes it possible to compare different cultures but can dangerously lead us to what Stephen Palmer and Pittu Laungani (1999) call as a form of intellectual imperialism. (p. 16) These highlights the fact that today in a post-modernist world, all counseling becomes cross-cultural in the sense that even if one shares ethnicity, and appears similar, the cultural difference still prevails.

Cultural relativism claims that each culture must have its own explanation in its own...
9 Pages (2250 words) Term Paper

Analysis of All Changes Great or Small Exploring Approaches to Change and Its Leadership Article by Higgs and Rowland

The change referred to in this context includes a broad array of topics. From an individual perspective, the change may be a new behavior. From a business perspective, the change may be a new business process and/or new technology. From a societal perspective, the change may be a new public policy or the passing of new legislation. Successful change, however, requires more than a new process, technology or public policy. Successful change may require the engagement and participation of the people involved. Change management provides a framework for managing the people side of these changes. The most recent research points to a combination of organizational change management tools and individual change management models for effecti...
13 Pages (3250 words) Article

Native American History: Shawnee History

In fact, the word Shawnee comes from the word Shawun which is an Algonquin word that translates to “southerner”. The Shawnee people are known to refer to themselves and their tribe as Shawano or Shawano. This particular language is quite similar to Sank-Fox. The recorded history pertinent to this particular tribe, dos do not begin until around 1670. Anything prior to this is simply not recorded and is unconfirmed by most historians. The Shawnee are thought to have been located originally at the Cumberland basin in Tennessee around this time, with perhaps smaller portions of the tribe living on the Middle Savannah which was located in South Carolina. Interestingly, the tribe was separated into two parts which lived a co...
10 Pages (2500 words) Report

The American Nation: A Melting Pot of Asian Americans

As a result, American society is experiencing dramatic transformations (Skop & Li, 2005).
The Asian community in the United States is a cultural group that has assumed form since the passing of the 1965 immigration legislation. Even though Asians have been arriving in the United States since the middle of the 1980s, only in the previous four decades have the waves been remarkable. At some stage in that period, the U.S. Asian population has increased dramatically, and Asians one of today’s fastest-growing ethnic and racial minorities in the nation (ibid).
Asian immigration to and settlement in the United States is somewhat well recognized. Generally, Asian immigrants are geographically concentrated, with the imm...
7 Pages (1750 words) Assignment

Arab Americans and Bonds of Hate Groups

The Arab-Israeli conflict has so far been the major influence on how the Arabs were treated in the United States criminal justice system. The American partiality towards Israel and the Arab hostility has been a prominent variable in the American criminal justice system’s policymaking. However, the single most significant historical development that has impacted the relationship between Arab Americans and the criminal justice system was the 9/11 terrorist attack. This event is pivotal in the criminalization of the US immigration law and the legal and bureaucratic reforms that were implemented, including the new alien detention authorities of the US Patriot Act and the separation of the service and law enforcement functions of...
6 Pages (1500 words) Assignment

Racism in America: Asian Americans

The first aspect that we are going to discuss is undeserved impoverishment and enrichment. Ten of the U.S. presidents enslaved black people at some point in their lives. American history is full of politicians including George Washington who enslaved African Americans (Feagin 14). These tyrants viewed the black Americans as weak, inferior and collapsed and believed that only blacks deserved to be enslaved. Therefore it would not be false if we say that American slavery was racial. The blacks had no freedom at all in that society and were treated worse than horses. If a black American ran from the master, the other people would bring him back to the master and the master would punish the slave and brutalize him. The women slaves we...
10 Pages (2500 words) Assignment

Ethnography: Native Americans or American Indians

...Ethnography: Native Americans or American Indians (Sioux Indians) Native Americans or American Indians are the indigenous people seen mainly in the Northern American region such as Alaska and Hawaii. In fact Native American community comprises of various ethnic groups. Native Americans like to refer them as American Indians or Red Indians and they believe that they are the original American people and all others are immigrants or expatriates. They were the residents of American continent well before the discovery of America by Columbus. Even though majority of the native Indian subcultural groups are peace loving, some particular ethnic groups in this community are aggressive in nature. For example, Sioux Indians or Dakota Indians...
8 Pages (2000 words) Term Paper

Italian Americans in New York

The majority of Italians moved to New York after migrating from Italy. Therefore, now the majority of Italian ancestors and Italian Americans who are born in this country are living as American citizens, but they called Italian Americans because their ancestors belong from Italy. When the Italians came to America they also brought a variety of religious, cultural, social and traditional practices, which are now part of the American culture, as well (Schiavo, 2010).

The social life of Italian Americans was disturbed as they migrated to New York but gradually they started socializing. Although the steady progress towards socialism by the Italian Americans was not very adhering, they tried to follow their social customs, f...
6 Pages (1500 words) Term Paper
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Essay on topic All these museum pieces of the once-proud native Americans for FREE!

Contact Us