What can an American Indian and Indigenous Studies course do for you?
It can make you uniquely competitive as a multidisciplinary thinker.
Spring 2019 Course Roster
AIIS 1110 – INDIGENOUS ISSUES IN GLOBAL PERSPECTIVES
Professor Karim-Aly Kassim | M/W 11:15AM-12:05 PM | AMST 1601
This course attends to the contemporary issues, contexts and experiences of Indigenous peoples. Students will develop a substantive understanding of colonialism and engage in the parallels and differences of its histories, forms, and effects on Indigenous peoples globally. Contemporary Indigenous theorists, novelists, visual artists and historians have a prominent place in the course, highlighting social/environmental philosophies, critical responses to and forms of resistance toward neocolonial political and economic agendas and the fundamental concern for Indigenous self determination, among other topics.
Distribution Category (CA-AG, D-AG, HA-AG)
AIIS 2660 – EVERYTHING YOU KNOW ABOUT INDIANS IS WRONG: UNLEARNING NATIVE AMERICAN HISTORY
Professor Jon Parmenter | M/W 9:05-9:55AM | HIST 2660, AMST 2660
One thing many Americans think they know is their Indians: Pocahontas, the First Thanksgiving, fighting cowboys, reservation poverty, and casino riches. Under our very noses, however, Native American history has evolved into one of the most exciting, dynamic, and contentious fields of inquiry into America’s past. It is now safer to assume, as Comanche historian Paul Chaat Smith has pointed out, that everything you know about Indians is in fact wrong. Most people have much to “unlearn” about Native American history before true learning can take place. This course aims to achieve that end by (re)introducing students to key themes and trends in the history of North America’s indigenous nations. Employing an issues-oriented approach, the course stresses the ongoing complexity of Native American societies’ engagements with varieties of settler colonialism since 1492 and dedicates itself to a concerted program of myth-busting. As such, the course will provide numerous opportunities for students to develop their critical thinking and reading skills. (HPE)
Distribution Category (HB, HA-AS)
AIS 2100 – INDIGENOUS INGENUITIES AS LIVING NETWORKS
Prof. Jolene Rickard | Tu/Th 2:55PM–4:10PM | AMST 2108, ARTH 2101
Explore the links between sustainability, the environmental movement, gender equity and Indigenous cultures through specific "ingenuities" developed in connection with this land. Learn how an Indigenous-Haudenosaunee perspective traces the interconnectedness of “all living things” from ancient beginnings and sees local spaces as an integral part of being, body, and the future.
AIS 2240/ 6240– NATIVE AMERICAN LANGUAGES
Prof. Sarah Murray | Tu/Th 11:40AM–12:55PM | LING 2248/6248
This course explores the wide variety of languages indigenous to the Americas. There were thousands of languages spoken in the Americas before the arrival of Europeans and hundreds of these languages are still spoken today. We will look at several of these languages in terms of their linguistic structure as well as from social, historical, and political perspectives. No prior linguistic background is required and no previous knowledge of any Native American languages is presumed.
AIIS 3422 – CULTURE, POLITICS, AND ENVIRONMENT IN THE CIRCUMPOLAR NORTH
Professor Paul Nadasdy | Tu/Th 10:10AM-11:25AM | ANTRH 3422
Co-meets with AIIS 6422 /ANTHR 6422 .
This course examines the cultures and histories of the circumpolar North. The primary emphasis is on the North American Arctic and Subarctic with some attention to northern Eurasia for comparative purposes. The focus is on the indigenous peoples of the region and the socio-political and ecological dimensions of their evolving relationships with southern industrial societies.
Distribution Category (CA-AG, D-AG)
AIIS 4000 – CRITICAL APPROACHES TO AMERICAN INDIAN AND INDIGENOUS STUDIES: INTELLECTUAL HISTORY
Professor Troy Richardson | W 1:25PM-4:25PM
Enrollment limited to: advanced undergraduates. Co-meets with AIIS 6000 . Course requirements differ at 4000 and 6000 levels.
An interdisciplinary survey of the literature in Native American Studies. Readings engage themes of indigeneity, coloniality, power, and “resistance.” The syllabus is formed from some “classic” and canonical works in Native American Studies but also requires an engagement with marginal writings and theoretical and historical contributions from scholars in other disciplines.
AIIS 4200 –LOCKE AND THE PHILOSOPHIES OF DISPOSSESION: INDIGENOUS AMERICA'S INTERRUPTIONS AND RESISTANCES
Professor Troy Richardson | M 1:25PM-4:25PM | AMST 4220, PHIL 4941
Recommended prerequisite: AIIS 1110 and AIIS 4000 /AIIS 6000 . Co-meets with AIIS 6200 /AMST 6220 /PHIL 6941 .
This course looks at the philosopher John Locke as a philosopher of dispossession. There is a uniquely Lockean mode of missionization, conception of mind and re-formulations of the ‘soul’ applied to dispossess Indigenous peoples of the social institutions, intellectual traditions and the material bases and practices which sustain(ed) them. While colonization is typically used as a kind of shorthand for this process, we will be attempting to stay focused on the specific dimensions of Lockean dispossession and its mutually informing relationship with English colonialism.
AIIS 4970 – INDEPENDENT STUDY
Staff | TBD
The American Indian Program office must approve independent study forms. Students from all colleges must submit a CALS Special Studies form available online. Topic and credit hours TBA between faculty member and student.
Distribution Category (CU-UGR)
AIIS 6970 – INDEPENDENT STUDY
Staff | TBD
A student may, with approval of a faculty advisor, study a problem or topic not covered in a regular course or may undertake tutorial study of an independent nature in an area of interest in American Indian and Indigenous Studies.
Distribution Category (CU-UGR)
Courses that are not crosslisted but MAY count towards AIIS Minor:
ANTHR 2045 – AMERICAN INDIAN MUSIC IN CONTEXT
Prof. Shawaano Chad Uran | TBA
This course will introduce students to the politics, practices, aesthetics, and purposes of North American Indigenous music. Students will learn about socio-historical contexts of colonization and sovereignty, and how they influence the production and reception of North American Indigenous musical expressions. Other topics of focus will include issues of representation, cultural property ownership, and ethical concerns.
ANTHR 4268/7268 - [Aztecs and Their Empire: Myth, History, and Politics]
Prof. John Henderson | Th 12:20PM-2:15PM | ARKEO 4268, LATA 4269
Examines the structure and history of the largest polity in ancient Mexico, the "empire" of the Aztecs, using descriptions left by Spanish invaders, accounts written by Aztecs under Colonial rule, and archaeological evidence. Explores Aztec visions of the past, emphasizing the roles of myth, religion, and identity in Aztec statecraft and the construction of history
Courses that do not count toward the AIIS Minor:
ANTHR 1101 - From the Swampy Land: Indigenous People of the Ithaca Area
Professor Kurt Jordan | TR 10:10-11:25
Who lived in the Ithaca area before American settlers and Cornell arrived? Where are they today? This class explores the history and culture of the Cayuga people, who call themselves Gayogohó:no, or people from the mucky land. We will read perspectives written by the region's indigenous people about their past history and current events, try to understand reasons why that history has been fragmented and distorted by more recent settlers, and delve into primary sources documenting encounters between colonists and Cayuga people. We will also strive to understand the Cayuga people's ongoing connection to this region despite several centuries of forced exclusion. Writing assignments initially will respond to assigned readings, and build toward independent work that grapples with primary sources on Cayuga history.