Center for Tribal Studies Presents NSU 48th Annual Symposium on the American Indian
By: Lani Hansen/Reporter
OKMULGEE, Oklahoma– The Northeastern State University Center for Tribal Studies (CTS) and American Indian Heritage Committee (AIHC) are preparing for the 48th Annual Symposium on the American Indian.
The AIHC is made up of students leaders, faculty and staff at NSU.
According to a press release from CTS, the Symposium on the American Indian will be held April 13-18, 2020, centered on the theme, “Visionaries of Indian Country.” The meaning of the theme is American Indians who carry with them the knowledge, traditions and language of their ancestors as they serve as leaders within their family, tribe and community. These visionaries are not just focused on the here and now, but are cognizant of how decisions made today will impact future generations. This concept of the seventh generation is a way of life for many indigenous people, a method of integrating the past, present and future. The visionaries of Indian Country are vital to the preservation and sustainability of our languages, community, environment and sovereignty.
Each year the committee selects keynote speakers who are supported by the Oklahoma Humanities Council.
“We usually discuss who our keynote speakers will be for the coming Symposium a year in advance,” Alisa Douglas CTS Coordinator for Students Programs said.
The keynote speakers for the Symposium include: Mark Trahant (Shoshone-Bannock), editor of Indian Country Today and board Chair for Vision Maker Media; Adrienne Keene (Cherokee), assistant professor of American and Ethnic Studies at Brown University; and Kainoa Embernate (‘Ōiwi Hawaii), founder of Hālau ‘Ōlelo, an online school for the Hawaiian Language.
“Mark Trahant will be speaking about Native voice and literature in media and how it affects our future generations,” Sara Barnett Director of Center for Tribal Studies said. “Then Adrienne Keene will be speaking about her efforts to address cultural appropriation and mainstream society in media, and talk about the importance of accurate, respectful and appropriate representation of Indigenous people. Kainoa Embernate will be talking about his work with the Hawaiian language and how he developed an online platform so indivduals could learn the Hawaiian language.”
Symposium presentation topics include: sustainability, cultural preservation, environmental justice, tribal sovereignty, community building, Indigenous leadership, history (from an indigenous perspective), indigenous knowledge, anthropology, language revitalization, art and literature.
A set agenda for the 48th annual Sympoium will be posted soon. Some activities listed are a film series showing at the beginning of the week, opening of the Symposium will be on Wednesday which the keynote speakers will present Wednesday through Friday, and on Saturday will be the Symposium Powwow.
The Symposium on the American Indian is a community event, there is no registration fee and events are open to the public. Funding has been provided by the Oklahoma Arts Council and Oklahoma Humanities Council.
For more information, visit cts.nsuok.edu and follow the link to the NSU Symposium. Individuals may also contact the Center for Tribal Studies for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org 918-444-4350.