Indigenous Thinkers

AIS 285
Medicine Bear Winter

Fall 2020 -- There are two popular narratives about Native Americans. The first is that their ancestors reached the Americas via the Bering Strait some 13,000 years ago. The second is that the majority died from infectious diseases when Columbus et al. colonized “the New World.” This course is an introduction to the history of knowledge-making by and about Indigenous people, their narratives, their knowledge, and their health. Beginning with virgin soils and migration stories, and working up to the present day, will examine both the lived experiences of Indigenous peoples in North America and the ways their health and knowledge have been discussed and used for ulterior purposes. Over the next thirteen weeks, we will consider settler colonialism’s continued effects on Indigenous health, the language used to discuss Native health, and the ways American Indians adopted from western biomedicine. We will also take seriously Indigenous knowledge on its own, from origin stories to deep botanical and geographical knowledge, as well as look at what Euro-Americans borrowed from Indigenous cultures. 

12:30PM - 1:50PM
Instructor: Juliet Larkin-Gilmore