Ella Cara Deloria “Aŋpétu Wašté Wiŋ”: Why she kicks ass
- She was an educator,anthropologist, ethnographer, linguist, and novelist of Yankton Sioux background. She recorded Sioux oral history and legends, and in the 1940s wrote a novel, Waterlily, finally published in 1988.
- Her linguistic abilities and her intimate knowledge of traditional and Christianised Sioux culture, together with her deep commitment both to Native American culture and to scholarship, allowed Deloria to carry out important, often ground-breaking work in anthropology and ethnology, as well as to produce translations in to English of historical and scholarly texts in Sioux. She was compiling a Sioux dictionary at the time of her death.
- In 1938-39, she was part of a small group of researchers hired to construct a socioeconomic study on the Navajo Reservation for the Bureau of Indian Affairs that was funded by the Phelps Strokes Fund. This study resulted in a report, The Navajo Indian Problem, that was published. This well received project opened the door for her to receive more speaking engagements and funding to continue her important work on native languages.
- In 1940, she and a sister went to Pembroke, North Carolina to conduct some research among the Lumbee tribe, who were in the process of pursuing federal recognition. Deloria believed she could make an important contribution to their effort by studying their distinctive culture and language. In her study, she diligently conducted interviews with Lumbee women about plants, food, medicine, and animal names. She also conducted a comparative study between some of the native languages and Lumee slang words. She came very close to completing a dictionary of their original language before the addition of English and various other language phrases.
- She also assembled two successful pageants for and about the Lumbee people in 1940 and 1941 that depicted their origin account that allegedly connects the Lumbee to the Lost Colony of the Outer Banks region.
- Deloria won the Indian Achievement Award in 1943, and was the recipient of grants from the Wenner-Gren Foundation (1948) and the National Science Foundation (1960s).
- In 2010, the Department of Anthropology of Columbia University, her alma mater, established the Ella C. Deloria Undergraduate Research Fellowship in her honor.
*****TRIGGER WARNING FOR DISCUSSION OF RAPE AND ABUSE*****
Old news (almost two years old), but damn, isn’t it worth another look? Particularly since it didn’t especially fit into any media narrative so it was largely ignored? And heartening/inspiring news is especially welcome in this age of the GOP’s thriving War on Women. Incidentally, observe President Obama’s behavior at the speech and see if you can imagine any of the GOP frontrunners doing the same. Sorry, but I can’t.
We should all know the name Lisa Marie Iyotte for her incredible bravery and activism.
From Amazing Women Rock:
Rape Survivor Lisa Marie Iyotte Introduces President Obama
US President Obama just signed the Tribal Law and Order Act — an important step to help the Federal Government better address the unique public safety challenges that confront tribal communities.
According to a Department of Justice report, Native American women suffer from violent crime at a rate three and a half times greater than the national average. Astoundingly, one in three Native American women will be raped in their lifetimes.
At the White House Tribal Nations Conference in November 2009, President Obama stated that this shocking figure “is an assault on our national conscience that we can no longer ignore.”
Last week, Congress took another important step to improve the lives of Native American women by passing the Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010. The Act includes a strong emphasis on decreasing violence against women in Native communities, and is one of many steps this Administration strongly supports to address the challenges faced by Native women.
The stipulations in the Act that will benefit Native women reflect several Administration priorities. The Act will strengthen tribal law enforcement and the ability to prosecute and fight crime more effectively. The Indian Health Care Improvement Act will require that a standardized set of practices be put in place for victims of sexual assault in health facilities. Now, more women will get the care they need, both for healing and to aid in the prosecution of their perpetrators.
Victims of domestic violence and sexual assault will now more often encounter authorities who have been trained to handle such cases. The Act expands training of tribal enforcement officers on the best ways to interview victims of domestic and sexual violence and the importance of collecting evidence to improve rates of conviction.
The Director of Indian Health Services will coordinate with the Department of Justice, Tribes, Tribal organizations and urban Indian organizations to develop standardized sexual assault policies and protocols.
Click here to read the full story by Lynn Rosenthal at The Whitehouse
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