In recent years, it has become fairly common to assert that Native Americans were the victims of genocide, but what exactly does that mean? Given the nature of this crime and its significance to the contested terrain of this nation’s history, it shouldn’t be a surprise that these claims have usually sparked a fair amount of discussion and debate as to the meaning of the word genocide and the most accurate and meaningful way to characterize the historic and present day experiences of Native American population groups. In this presentation, Alex Alvarez will assess some of the claims of genocide, with specific reference to a number of well-known examples such as the Sand Creek Massacre, in order to arrive at a more nuanced, complex, and ultimately more human understanding of the history of Native America post-contact.
In 2017-2018, Prof. Alvarez is the Ida E. King Distinguished Visiting Scholar in Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Stockton University in New Jersey.
Sponsored by the Institute for Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies. Co-sponsored by Five College Native American and Indigenous Studies.