(Shared Places): Tribal Cultures and Histories
isem 101 (42)  

Description and Goals
Course Themes
Course Requirements
Class Schedule
Your Guide to Writing a Reading
Indigenous Aesthetics
Indian Humor
Historical Trauma
Federal Indian Policy


Native American Historical Trauma, Intergenerational Trauma and Unresolved Grief

Major Scholars of Historical trauma are Dr. Maria Yellow Horse Brave Heart, Eduardo and Bonnie Duran

"Intergenerational Trauma and Historical Grief in American Indians: A Review of Concepts" 

Historical Trauma The collective emotional, psychological and spiritual injury both over the life span and across generations, resulting from a cataclysmic history of genocide.

Causes of historical trauma: a legacy of genocide

Six Phases of Historical Unresolved Grief

1st Contact
: life shock, genocide, no time for grief
Colonization: introduction of disease and alcohol, traumatic events such as Wounded Knee Massacre 1889

EconomicCompetition: sustenance loss, loss of homeland and foods/resources (physical/spiritual)

Invasion/War Period
: extermination, refugee symptoms

Subjugation/Reservation Period
: confined/translocated, forced dependency on oppressor, lack of security

Boarding School Period
: destroyed family system
beatings, rape, prohibition of Native language and religion;
Lasting Effect: ill-prepared for parenting, identity confusion

Forced Relocation and Termination Period
: transfer to urban areas, prohibition of religious freedom
racism/viewed as second class; loss of governmental system and community

Coping Strategies
Psychological: depression, suicide 2x national rate
Behavioral: alcohol 5.5x national rate
Medical: heart disease 2x national rate
Internalized Oppression: accepting the oppressor's definition of you
Lateral Oppression: expressing frustration and anger at those you love or your own community

3 Major Hypotheses:
1. Education increases awareness of trauma (I'm not crazy; other people feel this way too)
2. Sharing effects of trauma provides relief: testimony, literature
3. Grief resolution through collective mourning/healing creates
    positive group identity and commitment to community