The American Indian Studies Research Institute was founded in 1985 at IU to serve as an interdisciplinary research center for projects focusing on the native peoples of the Americas. Help provide support today!
Founded in 1985 at Indiana University, the American Indian Studies Research Institute is an interdisciplinary center for research relating to American Indians. Its primary function is to provide the institutional structure necessary to carry out collaborative projects between Indiana University and American Indian peoples. The current focus of institute projects is on the Plains and Great Lakes areas, especially those that support Native American language reclamation. Projects are initiated by institute faculty members and graduate students at Indiana University, by institute research associates elsewhere, and by American Indian groups. In addition to research, the institute sponsors educational programs in collaboration with American Indian tribes and publications intended to contribute to the development of the field of Native American and Indigenous Studies.
Most American Indian research loses the beauty and depth of American Indian heritage because it is based solely on Euro-American interpretations of the Native American past. Scholars at IU’s Institute, however, base their work on manuscripts, field interviews, and other primary sources that allow readers to hear the past of the American Indian firsthand. Projects are developed in collaboration and with the approval of the Indian communities involved.
Through such primary accounts and collaboration, the Institute is dedicated to preserving a record of past American Indian traditions. Many tribes have lost their finest native language speakers, and some tribal languages are now endangered. As native languages continue to diminish, the only sources of traditional narratives and cultural knowledge will come from collections such as the those archived at Indiana University. Thus, we are actively working in collaborative partnerships with several Native American communities to help these communities reclaim their languages and cultural knowledge.
FUNDING – TOMORROW’S CHALLENGE
The American Indian Studies Research Institute has come far with relatively little in the way of financial support. The investment of time and work to build a viable Institute has already been made.
Tomorrow’s challenge is to keep growing. The Institute’s development must continue to follow the overall plan for Indiana University by improving the quality and integrity of the undergraduate experience, initiating new research agendas, and providing educational experiences for the people of the state.
But first the program needs more substantial funding. Short-term grants for specific projects do not provide the funding the Institute needs to flourish. To plan for the future, the Institute needs financial support.
Your gift will help the Institute further develop and create new collaborative partnerships with Native American communities. Immediately, it will support projects that help these communities reclaim their languages and cultural heritage for current generations, and it will have a positive impact on future generations to come.
Thank you for your generous support!
For more information, http://www.indiana.edu/~aisri/iuday/
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