The Native American Identity in Sports: Creating and Preserving a Culture

Front Cover
Frank A. Salamone
Rowman & Littlefield, 2013 - Social Science - 213 pages
On October 15, 1964 Billy Mills became the only American to win an Olympic Gold Medal for the 10,000 meters. It was but one notable triumph in sports by a Native American. Yet, unlike Mills's achievement, most significant contributions from Native Americans have gone unheralded. From individual athletes, teams, and events, it is clear that the "Vanishing Americans" are not vanishing--but they are sadly overlooked. The Native American Identity in Sports: Creating and Preserving a Culture not only includes, but goes beyond the great achievements of Billy Mills to note numerous other instances of Native American accomplishment and impact on sports. This collection of essays examines how sport has contributed to shaping and expressing Native American identity--from the attempt of the old Indian Schools to "Americanize" Native Americans through sport to the "Indian mascot" controversy and what it says about the broader public view of Native Americans. Additional essays explore the contemporary use of the traditional sport Toka to combat obesity in some Native American communities, the Seminoles' commercialization of alligator wrestling--a "Native" sport that was, in fact, only developed as a sport due to interest from tourists--and much more. The contributions to this volume not only tell the story of Native Americans' participation in the world of sports, but also how Native Americans have changed and enriched the sports world in the process. For anyone interested in the deep effect sport has on culture, The Native American Identity in Sports is an indispensable read.
 

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Contents

Fifty Years of Native American Athletes Sports and Games on Film
1
2 Asserting Native American Agency in an Assimilationist Institution
29
3 Amateur Boxing and Assimilation at the Stewart Indian School Carson City Nevada 19351948
41
4 Federal Indian Boarding Schools in New Mexico
57
5 American Indian Collegiate Athletes Accessing Higher Education Through Sport
91
Empowering Women and Combating Obesity in Tohono Oodham Communities
111
7 Native American Wrestling
121
The Seminoles and the Commercialization of Alligator Wrestling
131
The Development of Native American Tennis
143
Olympic Champion Lakota Warrior
173
Billy Mills the 1964 Olympics and the Understandings of Native American Cold War Race Relations
185
AntiIndian Racism in the Creation and Contestation of the NCAA Ban on Native American Mascots
193
Index
207
About the Editor and Contributors
211
Copyright

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About the author (2013)

Frank A. Salamone is emeritus professor and past Chair of Sociology and Anthropology at Iona College, New Rochelle, NY. He has authored or edited more than 10 books and over 100 articles. His recent books include The Lucy Memorial Freed Slaves' Home, with Virginia Salamone, The Italians of Rochester, NY: 1940-1860, and The Culture of Jazz: Jazz as Critical Culture.

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