Orginal Publication Date
Explorations in Sights and Sounds
The relationship between federal policy and Indian needs has been a tortured one, at best, and to illuminate the various dimensions of that relationship is a necessary, but by no means easy, task. Vine Deloria, Jr. , and Clifford M. Lytle have fortunately provided us with a creditable analysis of one aspect of the complex interaction between the concerns of U.S. Officials and those of Indian groups. The authors focus on the idea of self-government, tracing it from the paternalism of nineteenth century reservation procedures through New Deal reformism, termination, and the contemporary emergence of Indian nationalism. They differentiate nationhood -- "a process of decision making that is free and uninhibited" from self-government, which "implies a recognition by the superior political power that some measure of local decision making is necessary." Deloria and Lytle realize that Indian sovereignty has been historically undermined to such an extent that present-day Indians can only hope to establish a measure of self-government instead of any feasible federal recognition of their nationhood.
Copyright, ©EES, The National Association for Ethnic Studies, 1985