American Indian Sovereignty

The Struggle for Religious, Cultural and Tribal Independence


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About the Book

Since the arrival of European settlers, Native American cultural sovereignty has been under attack. Self-determination is a tribal right of Native people, but colonial oppression banned their traditions and religion, purloined and misused sacred sites, and betrayed treaties when convenient. Over time, the settlers usurped Native American culture and lands, and these destructive behaviors continue today. Within the decimated Native American culture left after forced assimilation, American Indians still struggle to retain their rights. In this historical account of the despotism against Native American culture, the altercations of sovereignty, territory, and pluralistic democracy are analyzed in an effort to provide a path towards justice. Instructors considering this book for use in a course may request an examination copy here.

About the Author(s)

J. Mark Hazlett II (Ph.D., political science, University of Tennessee) has taught at the university and college level and has worked as a private consultant for numerous American Indian groups and tribes on a variety of issues. He has advised student and community groups and has assisted in their quests for both state and federal recognition and in writing constitutions and bylaws; serving on powwow committees; and assisted in procuring grants. He lives in Covington, Louisiana.

Bibliographic Details

J. Mark Hazlett II

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 256
Bibliographic Info: maps, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8142-9
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4009-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Preface 1
Maps 4
Chapter One: The Struggles Begin 9
The Setting 9
The American Indian View 10
The View of the Newcomers 13
The Meaning of Sovereignty 16
Structure of the Book 19
Chapter Two: The Challenges Ahead 22
Introduction 22
Challenges from the New Nation 32
The Continuing Conflict 50
Summary and Concluding Remarks 61
Chapter Three: Sacred Sites and Culture: The Spiritual Assault 66
Introduction 66
American Indian Religions 70
Supreme Court Doctrines and Tests 76
The Sacred Site Cases 79
The New Age Threat 94
The Legislative Remedies? 102
The Trust Doctrine 105
Congressional Actions 107
Protecting the Past 109
Review and Conclusions 112
Chapter Four: Environmental Sovereignty in Indian Country 116
Introduction 116
The ­Eco-Indian: Myth and Reality 117
Indian Control of Their Environment 120
Tribal Government 124
Federal Environmental Laws 128
TAS Under the Clean Water Act 130
Waste in the Wastelands 132
Other Environmental Challenges Facing Indian Tribes 139
Conclusion 143
Chapter Five: The Battles Continue 146
Introduction 146
The New Battles 147
The Future of Tribal Sovereignty 158
Realizing Sacredness? 164
Sovereign Solutions 165
Final Thoughts 167
Appendix I: American Indian Religious Freedom, Public Law 95-341 183
Appendix II: Chief Seattle’s Speech 185
Chapter Notes 189
Bibliography 227
Index 243