Symposium on the American Indian

About the Symposium

Call for Proposals
Symposium Agenda
Symposium Sessions
Symposium Speakers
Symposium Film Series
Native Language Summit
Native Language Summit Sessions
Vendor Info
School Registration

45th Annual Symposium on the American Indian

Indian Givers: Indigenous Inspirations

*April 10-15, 2017
Northeastern State University
University Center, Tahlequah, OK

*Please note the recent date change


The 45th Annual Symposium on the American Indian theme is “Indian Givers: Indigenous Inspirations”. The term “Indian Giver” has a rather negative connotation in American culture, reflecting one of the greatest cultural misunderstandings of Western history. Lewis and Clark have been credited with coining the term, as they did not quite understand the gift exchange and bartering practices of the local tribes and perceived them to be unfair or even insulting. While there were obvious differences in culture, beliefs, and customs of Indigenous people and what would eventually become the dominant western culture, the two have managed to coexist. In fact, there are many areas in which American Indian culture has influenced and inspired the development of modern culture, as noted in Jack Weatherford’s book, Indian Givers: How the Indians of the Americas Transformed the World. The 45th Annual Symposium on the American Indian will focus on the many ways in which American Indians have contributed to mainstream, western culture through art, literature, government, and other areas of the humanities. Presentations will explore these contributions in both a historical and contemporary context.

Hosted By:
NSU Center for Tribal Studies

All events are FREE and open to the public


Jacklyn Roessel (Navajo) – Founder of Grown Up Navajo, former Education and Public Programs Director at the Heard Museum
Tim Tingle (Choctaw) – Author and Storyteller (
Dr. Jeff Corntassel (Cherokee) – University of Victoria, Canada
Dr. Jenny Davis (Chickasaw) – University of Illinois
Dr. Devon Mihesuah (Choctaw) – University of Kansas


Holiday Inn Express
2143 Mahaney Avenue
Tahlequah, OK  74464
(918) 506-4545

Econo Lodge
101 Reasor St.
Tahlequah, OK 74464
(918) 431-0600

NSU is a tobacco-free campus
. Follow us facebook and Twitter