“Kill the Indian, Save the Man” – Education and the Assimilation of Native Americans
June 4, 2017
3 pm CST
Bavendick Stateroom, National Energy Center of Excellence at Bismarck State College
The standard Euro-American (white) view through most of the 19th century was that American Indians would either simply disappear or be assimilated into the larger white culture. Some white “reformers,” including Richard Henry Pratt (1840-1924), believed that it was necessary to “kill the Indian” in order to “save the man.” Indian boarding schools attempted to erase “Indianness” by cutting boys’ hair, forcefully suppressing any use of indigenous languages, punishing native religious practices on all pupils, and preventing contact between young students and their families back on the reservations. This Conversation will examine the history of assimilation policies, especially the Indian boarding school movement, and the conflicting views of reformers between advocating these off-reservation schools and day schools close to or on reservations.
Conversations at BSC is a series of conversations to enrich the community’s understanding of historical and contemporary topics. Held on selected Sunday afternoons between September and June, these enlightening programs take an inclusive look at the world by emphasizing the 360-degree perspective of the humanities. Each conversation begins with a presentation by Clay Jenkinson, BSC distinguished scholar of the humanities, followed by discussion with BSC President Larry C. Skogen, an historian, and their occasional guests. Questions and comments from the audience complete the conversation.
Can’t make it to Bismarck, ND? Watch the event live.
David Wallace Adams Education for Extinction: American Indians and the Boarding School Experience 1875-1928
Adam Fortunate Eagle Pipestone: My Life in an Indian Boarding School
Kent Nerburn The Wolf at Twilight: An Indian Elder’s Journey through a Land of Ghosts and Shadows