Native American Cultural Celebration

Native American Cultural Celebration 2013

“A Culture, not a Costume: Portraits of Native American Heritage”

Native American culture and heritage has a long history of being appropriated in American popular culture as costume, pageantry, and spectacle.  What is traditional regalia for the Native American culture has often been used as Halloween costumes, sports mascots, or depicted as noble savages, devoid of its deep symbolic, culture, and religious meaning.  But Native American culture is more than beads and feathers; it is rich and complex, varied and contemporary.  Join the James Farmer Multicultural Center in learning about common popular culture and misconceptions about the Native American culture and traditions as we honor the history and heritage during our annual Native American Cultural Celebration.

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Weaving Time: Ancient Secrets Revealed In Maya Textiles

Monday, November 18 | 6 p.m. | Lee Hall, room 412

The Pre-Columbian Highland Maya population was a literate society with advanced systems of science, mathematics, philosophy, esthetics and literature.    A consequence of Spanish colonization was the destruction of libraries and the prohibition of Maya religious, scientific, economic or political advancement by the state.   In a brilliant maneuver of cultural resistance, Maya women wove the jewels of cultural knowledge in symbols in every day textiles.  Join Guadalupe Ramirez as she shares her continued journey to uncover the secrets of her ancestors.

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Film and Discussion: “Reel Injun”

Tuesday, November 19 | 6 p.m. | Combs Hall, room 237

Hollywood has made over 4000 films about Native people; over 100 years of movies defining how Indians are seen by the world. “Reel Injun” takes an entertaining and insightful look at the Hollywood Indian, exploring the portrayal of North American Natives through the history of cinema. Travelling through the heartland of America, Cree filmmaker Neil Diamond looks at how the myth of “the Injun” has influenced the world’s understanding – and misunderstanding – of Natives. With candid interviews with directors, writers, actors and activists, including Clint Eastwood, Jim Jarmusch, Robbie Robertson, Sacheen Littlefeather, John Trudell and Russell Means, clips from hundreds of classic and recent films, including “Stagecoach”, “Little Big Man”, “The Outlaw Josey Wales”, “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”, and “Atanarjuat the Fast Runner”, “Reel Injun” traces the evolution of cinema’s depiction of Native people from the silent film era to today.

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Native American Cultural Keynote Speaker: Dr. Mario Garza

Wednesday, November 20| 7 p.m. | Lee Hall, room 411

Garza_lecture     Dr. Mario Garza is an elder of the Meakan/Garzas Band of the Coahuiltecan people indigenous to the Texas and northeastern Mexico area. Since childhood, he has had an intense interest in art and music and is now an accomplished artist in sculpture, watercolors, pottery and flute playing. After serving two tours in Vietnam, Dr. Garza attended the University of Houston and Michigan State University, earning his Ph.D. in Political Science. He currently researches and presents educational lectures about Native Americans and has decades of involvement in the Native American community, including repatriation of remains, successful development of indigenous nonprofits, re-establishment of ceremonial sites, Native arts and events, and political issues.

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American Indians in the American Popular Imagination

Thursday, November 21 | 7:30 p.m. | Monroe Hall, room 116

The University of Mary Washington’s chapter of Phi Beta Kappa is pleased to announce Philip J. Deloria as the 2013-2014 Visiting Scholar.  Deloria is the Carroll Smith-Rosenberg Collegiate Professor, with a joint appointment in the departments of history and American culture, where he is currently the associate dean for undergraduate education in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts. He has served as president of the American Studies Association, a council member of the Organization of American Historians, and a trustee of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, and is an elected member of the Society of American Historians and the American Antiquarian Society.  Deloria is the author of two prize-winning books, Playing Indian and Indians in Unexpected Places, and coeditor of The Blackwell Companion to American Indian History and C.G. Jung and the Sioux Traditions: Dreams, Visions, Nature, and the Primitive by Vine Deloria Jr. He also has written numerous articles, essays, and reviews in the fields of American Indian studies, environmental history, and cultural studies.