Conference

The Lasting Effects of the "Americanization" of Indigenous Students of North America

Author
  • Hunter Davenport (Iowa State University)

Abstract

Beginning in the late 1800s, American Indian boarding schools have attempted to “Americanize” Indigenous youth. The lasting effects are seen through the inhumane way this process was undertaken. Boarding schools participated in relocation, conversion to Christianity, physical abuse, and much more—all in an attempt to “civilize” Indigenous people. Education by Natives and for Natives is a route that has been fought for vigorously. But still, to this day, the current state of reservation and settlement-based schooling is one of few resources, struggling staff, and a lack of technological support. But above all, to this day, the Indigenous students are the ones who are still suffering. The history of “Americanization” has caused generational grief and trauma for countless Indigenous peoples. Indigenous youth not only suffer academically from these trends, but they also suffer long after they leave. And in an ever-changing world, Indigenous students with great skills, dreams, and aspirations are left to fall into the generational trauma that their elders have suffered before them in a grueling cycle of pain and adversity.

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Published on
03 Mar 2023
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