Native American Mascot Controversy

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Overview

Sports mascots have been a tradition for decades. Along with the usual lions and tigers, many schools are represented by Native American images. Once considered a benign practice, numerous studies have proved just the opposite: that the use of Native American mascots in educational institutions has perpetuated a shameful history of racial insensitivity. The Native American Mascot Controversy provides an overview of the issues that have been associated with this topic for the past 40 years.

The book provides a comprehensive and critical account of the issues surrounding the controversy, explicating the importance of anti-Indian racism in education and how it might be challenged. A collection of important primary documents and an extensive list of resources for further study are also included. Expounding the dangers and damages associated with their continued use, The Native American Mascot Controversy is a useful guide for anyone with an interest in race relations.

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Editorial Reviews

CHOICE
The contributors link the history and significance of Native American mascots to ongoing struggles for social justice. Rejecting the idea that mascots are limited to sporting events, the authors persuasively argue that they are instead representative of dominant attitudes that both distance and dehumanize Native people. Hardly seeing mascots as an "honor," the authors trace how Native American mascots are based on an idea of a savage male opponent that will be vilified and humiliated by opposing teams. The book is aimed squarely at those working in higher education, for a school that endorses inaccurate, ahistorical images of Native Americans is hardly a safe space for Native students. The text compiles speeches, articles, policies, and resolutions that have been previously published, usually for a specific targeted audience. The value of this text is that it details both the scope and diversity of the opposition to Native American sports mascots. Oriented toward directing action on the part of readers to both educate and resist, the book can be viewed as a supplement to other sources, such as the Jay Rosenstein film In Whose Honor? (1997). Summing Up: Recommended. All levels/libraries.
Choice
The contributors link the history and significance of Native American mascots to ongoing struggles for social justice. Rejecting the idea that mascots are limited to sporting events, the authors persuasively argue that they are instead representative of dominant attitudes that both distance and dehumanize Native people. Hardly seeing mascots as an "honor," the authors trace how Native American mascots are based on an idea of a savage male opponent that will be vilified and humiliated by opposing teams. The book is aimed squarely at those working in higher education, for a school that endorses inaccurate, ahistorical images of Native Americans is hardly a safe space for Native students. The text compiles speeches, articles, policies, and resolutions that have been previously published, usually for a specific targeted audience. The value of this text is that it details both the scope and diversity of the opposition to Native American sports mascots. Oriented toward directing action on the part of readers to both educate and resist, the book can be viewed as a supplement to other sources, such as the Jay Rosenstein film In Whose Honor? (1997). Summing Up: Recommended. All levels/libraries.
Library Journal

Blaxploitation films were an outgrowth of the racial and political upheavals of the 1960s and offered black actors exposure they had not previously enjoyed. The first successful film in the cycle is generally considered to have been Melvin Van Peebles's Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song(1971). Walker (ed., BadAzz MoFo magazine), Andrew J. Rausch (Making Movies with Orson Welles), and director Chris Watson collect variably enlightening interviews with 22 participants in the blaxploitation era, a few now deceased. Both trained actors (e.g., William Marshall, Glynn Turman) and charismatic sports figures like Jim Brown and Fred Williamson starred in these often-superviolent movies, while white directors like Ralph Bakshi and Larry Cohen were frequently at the helm. Only a single woman, Gloria Hendry, is included. (See Stephane Dunn's "Baad Bitches" and Sassy Supermamas for more on female characters in blaxploitation films.) Given the relative paucity of writings on these films, any additional source is worthwhile. Although there's not complete agreement on what should be considered part of this briefly popular subgenre, the lengthy filmography here should prove useful. Recommended for cinema collections.
—Roy Liebman

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810867314
  • Publisher: The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc
  • Publication date: 5/15/2009
  • Pages: 292
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

C. Richard King is associate professor of Comparative Ethnic Studies at Washington State University. He is also the author or editor of several books, including Native American Athletes in Sport and Society (2006), Native Americans in Sports (2003), and Animating Difference (2010).

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