November 11, 2013

"Redskins: Honored Mascot or Racial Slur"
Time: 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Location: Morgan Hall 101B
Description: "Redskins: Honoring Mascot or Racial Slur" is a panel discussion open and free to the public. Participants are Dr. Virginia Jelatis from the Department of History and Prof. Diane Sandage and Dr. Bridget Welch from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology.

Abstract:

The prevalence of stereotypical representations of the American Indian in contemporary American society is indicative of the gap between the historical experience of American Indian tribes and dominant American colonial narratives. The stereotypical image of the American Indian is widely accepted and largely unrecognized by current American audiences. Indeed, dominant discourse has been successful in selling Native American stereotypes to the American public as honorific portraits aimed at including the American Indian in contemporary American cultural life. Attempts to question the appropriateness and accuracy of cultural representations of the American Indian have been consistently met with derision and callousness. Perhaps nowhere is the struggle between damaging American Indian cultural representations and dominant discourse more evident than in the arguments surrounding the Washington Redskins. The persistence of the team name “Redskins” into the twenty first century raises important questions regarding identity and representation in America. By understanding the issues surrounding the continuing use of the term “Redskins” in professional football and popular cultural, we might be able to recognize the more subtle and complex problems faced by American Indians today. This panel will explore why racial stereotypes of the American Indian persist in contemporary American society by addressing the history of violence committed against the American Indian, the construction of the American Indian stereotype, and current representations of American Indians in American culture.
Contact Information:
 Ziyad F. Al-Mutairi
 Phone: (773) 253-1956
 Email: ZF-Al-Mutairi@wiu.edu
Source: College of Arts & Sciences

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