Decolonzing Museums: Representing Native America in National and Tribal Museums (First Peoples: New Directions in Indigenous Studies)

Decolonizing Museums Decolonizing Museums University of North Carolina Press

Amy Lonetree

University of North Carolina Press, 2012


This book examines how the history of Native Americans is told through museum exhibits.  Professor Lonetree looks at the growing voice of American Indians in the creation of exhibitions about their own story and how museums can convey Native culture within the context of Native American experience of genocide, and other unresolved trauma, and bring these momentous issues into exhibit rooms.

She focuses specifically on three national museums: Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian, the Mille Lacs Indian Museum in Minnesota, and the Ziibiwing Center of Anishinabe Culture and Lifeways in Michigan, with her expertise in academics and museums.  Lonetree includes historical pictures and texts and also staff interviews in examining contemporary concerns and suggests directions for future exhibits and presentations of Native American history and culture. 

Amy Lonetree (Ho-Chunk) is associate professor of American Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She is the co-editor of The National Museum of the American Indian: Critical Conversations and co-author of People of the Big Voice: Photographs of Ho-Chunk Families, 1879-1942.


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