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The Resurgence of Native American Identity. A case study of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah)

Holm, Johan (2006)
Department of Political Science
Abstract
This thesis explores the resurgence of Native American identity. Scholars have observed a dramatic increase of people identifying themselves as Native Americans over the past forty years in the decennial US Census. The increase coincides with the introduction of racial self-declaration in 1960; according to scholars this enables a process of ethnic switching where individuals change their race from non-Indian to Indian. This thesis is based on a study by Joane Nagel who explores this phenomenon and ascribes various characteristics to what she labels the ?new? Indians. My choice of case is the Wampanoags who nicely fit these characteristics.

The question in this thesis is directly derived from Nagel's study: ?Who are these ?new? Indians??.... (More)
This thesis explores the resurgence of Native American identity. Scholars have observed a dramatic increase of people identifying themselves as Native Americans over the past forty years in the decennial US Census. The increase coincides with the introduction of racial self-declaration in 1960; according to scholars this enables a process of ethnic switching where individuals change their race from non-Indian to Indian. This thesis is based on a study by Joane Nagel who explores this phenomenon and ascribes various characteristics to what she labels the ?new? Indians. My choice of case is the Wampanoags who nicely fit these characteristics.

The question in this thesis is directly derived from Nagel's study: ?Who are these ?new? Indians??. By conducting a case study, based on interviews, I work with a qualitative method in order to provide an answer to this question. I use the concept of ethnic identity in analysing the identity of the tribal members. The respondents? answers show that the most salient factors in the ethnic identity are territoriality, culture (involving social life, relationship to nature and education of the young) and to a lesser degree history (as a source of inspiration).

The case also shows that race is not a significant factor in the make-up of the ethnic identity with tribal members. (Less)
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author
Holm, Johan
supervisor
organization
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
Ethnic renewal, Ethnicity/Ethnic Identity, Native American, Martha's Vineyard, Wampanoag, Political and administrative sciences, Statsvetenskap, förvaltningskunskap
language
English
id
1325607
date added to LUP
2006-06-19
date last changed
2006-06-19
@misc{1325607,
  abstract     = {This thesis explores the resurgence of Native American identity. Scholars have observed a dramatic increase of people identifying themselves as Native Americans over the past forty years in the decennial US Census. The increase coincides with the introduction of racial self-declaration in 1960; according to scholars this enables a process of ethnic switching where individuals change their race from non-Indian to Indian. This thesis is based on a study by Joane Nagel who explores this phenomenon and ascribes various characteristics to what she labels the ?new? Indians. My choice of case is the Wampanoags who nicely fit these characteristics.

The question in this thesis is directly derived from Nagel's study: ?Who are these ?new? Indians??. By conducting a case study, based on interviews, I work with a qualitative method in order to provide an answer to this question. I use the concept of ethnic identity in analysing the identity of the tribal members. The respondents? answers show that the most salient factors in the ethnic identity are territoriality, culture (involving social life, relationship to nature and education of the young) and to a lesser degree history (as a source of inspiration).

The case also shows that race is not a significant factor in the make-up of the ethnic identity with tribal members.},
  author       = {Holm, Johan},
  keyword      = {Ethnic renewal,Ethnicity/Ethnic Identity,Native American,Martha's Vineyard,Wampanoag,Political and administrative sciences,Statsvetenskap, förvaltningskunskap},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {The Resurgence of Native American Identity. A case study of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah)},
  year         = {2006},
}