Symposium Sessions

Monday, April 10

Film Screening: Violet
Mark Williams (Choctaw)
6:00p - 8:00p
Webb Auditorium

An escaped mental patient dies in 1984 at the home of her former doctor. But that was just the beginning.

Starring Delno Ebie, Happy Frejo, Jeff S. Anderson and Kelly Sumpter. Written and Directed by Mark D. Williams. A Native Boy Productions LLC and E.F. Productions LLC film.

Tuesday, April 11

Film Screening: Medicine Woman
6:00p - 8:00p
Webb Auditorium

Medicine Woman, interweaves the lives of Native American women healers of today with the story of America’s first Native doctor, Susan La Flesche Picotte (1865-1915). The one-hour PBS documentary, produced by and about women, asks the pivotal question: What does it take to heal a people?

Wednesday, April 12

Print Action
Southeastern Indian Artists Association
9:00a - 12:00p
UC Lobby, 1st FL

NASA Opening Ceremony
Welcome to the 45th Annual Symposium
9:30a - 11:30a
UC Ballroom, 2nd FL

Official Opening & Introductions – Sara Barnett (Muscogee Creek)
President, Native American Student Association (NASA), presiding – Jacob Chavez (Cherokee)
Presentation of Colors – Cherokee Nation Color Guard
Grand Entry & Flag Song – Kelly Anquoe (Kiowa/Cherokee)
NSU Welcome – President Dr. Steve Turner
Cherokee Nation Welcome – Principal Chief Bill John Baker
United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians Welcome - Principal Chief Joe Bunch
Miss NANSU Crowning Ceremony
Special Presentation – Wewoka HS Students, First year students of Maskoke Seminole Language class

Keynote: Creative Indigeneity as Multiverse: Fusing Art & Leadership to Build Stronger Communities
Jacklyn Roessel (Navajo)
UC Ballroom, 2nd Floor

The speaker will discuss the ability of Indigenous people to transcend multiple perspectives - from being carriers of the traditions of their ancestors, contemporaries of today but also working to create a bright future for their people. This illustrative resiliency is key to the basis of building strong communities and having creativity be a tool in accessing these solutions is important. The speaker will pull from her professional career as well as her work within her community and the arts.

Sponsor: Oklahoma Humanities Council

Keynote: Reshaping Stories for Today – The Choctaw Way
Tim Tingle (Choctaw)
1:00p - 1:50p
UC Ballroom, 2nd Floor

Most of Tim Tingle's book are inspired by memories of Choctaw elders. But for today's readers, new angles are needed. With oral performance and readings, Tingle demonstrates his relighting of the fire circle.

Sponsor: Oklahoma Humanities Council

Panel Discussion: Historic and Contemporary Cherokee Art Movements: Mobilizing Cherokee Language Revitalization for Critical Art Description and Analysis
Dr. Candessa Tehee (Cherokee), Assistant Professor, Northeastern State University; David Crawler (Cherokee), Translator, Cherokee Nation; Ryan Mackey (Cherokee), Cultural Specialist, Cherokee Nation; Elizabeth Toombs (Cherokee), Cultural Arts Manager, Cherokee Nation Business; America Meredith (Cherokee), Editor and Founder, First American Art Magazine
2:00p - 2:50p
UC 222, 2nd Floor

This panel discussion will seek to engage Cherokee language revitalization with historic and contemporary Cherokee art forms to create ways to critically discuss and analyze artwork in the Cherokee language.

Virtual Reality Technology and the American Indian Category: Indigenous Contributions to Science
Dr. Angelina Dayton; Andrew Dayton (Cherokee), Indigenous Scientist, University of California Santa Cruz
2:00p - 2:50p
UC 225, 2nd Floor

This presentation will showcase Virtual Reality technology and provide information on some of the improvements made to the technology by using indigenous perspectives in its creation and application.

Jesse Bushyhead and the Cherokee Quest for Sovereignty
Dr. Dan Wimberly
3:00p - 4:00p
UC 222, 2nd Floor

A leader in the crucial period of Cherokee removal and establishment in Indian Territory, Jesse Bushyhead was involved in controversial issues concerning tribal politics, sovereignty, and denominational affairs.

Sustainable Communities
Dr. Tiffanie Hardbarger (Cherokee)
3:00p - 4:00p
UC 225, 2nd Floor

Students will present the results of their Photovoice research project focused on community and cultural sustainability within a Cherokee context.

Thursday, April 13

General Session and Keynote Hosted by Cherokee Promise Scholars
9:30a - 10:45a
UC Ballroom, 2nd FL

Keynote: Re-envisioning Indigenous Nationhood: Pathways to Sustainable Self-Determination
Dr. Jeff Corntassel (Cherokee)
UC Ballroom, 2nd Floor

Amidst ongoing, contemporary colonialism, this paper explores Indigenous pathways to sustainable self-determination with an emphasis on identifying the restoration of land-based and water-based cultural practices in communities today. By drawing on several comparative examples of community resurgence from Cherokees in Kituwah and Oklahoma, Lekwungen protection of camas, and Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiian) revitalization of kalo, this paper provides some insights into contemporary self-determination movements. The politics of distraction is operationalized here as a potential threat to Indigenous homelands, cultures and communities, and the harmful aspects of the rights discourse, reconciliation, and resource extraction are identified, discussed, and countered with Indigenous approaches centered on responsibilities, resurgence and relationships. Overall, findings from this research offer theoretical and applied understandings for regenerating Indigenous nationhood and restoring sustainable relationships with Indigenous homelands.

Sponsor: Oklahoma Humanities Council

Water, Food, and Land: Weaving Together Land-based Indigenous Rhetorics
Jaquetta Shade (Cherokee), Ph.D. student, Michigan State University; Kimberli Lee (Lakota), Ph.D., Northeastern State University; Ezekiel Choffel, Ph.D. student, Syracuse University; Malea Powell (Eastern Miami), Ph.D., Michigan State University
11:00a - 12:15p
UC 223-224, 2nd Floor

This Indigenous rhetorics panel considers the ways that land is written about, understood, and interacted with in regards to the classroom and public activism.

Tales of the Mighty Code Talkers - An All Indigenous Graphic Novel
Roy Boney, Jr. (Cherokee), Artist/Writer; Arigon Starr (Kickapoo), Artist/Writer/Editor; Johnnie Diacon (Muscogee Creek), Artist
11:00a - 12:15p
UC Ballroom, 2nd Floor

The graphic novel Tales of the Mighty Code Talkers tells some of the heroic stories of tribal Code Talkers during wartime. Contributors to the graphic novel will discuss the project.

Keynote: Religion, Politics, and Money: Thinking Through the Social Factors in Language Revitalization
Dr. Jenny Davis (Chickasaw)
1:00p - 2:15p
UC Ballroom, 2nd Floor

Indigenous and endangered language communities throughout North American and, in fact, the world, have begun implementing language maintenance and reclamation efforts in recent decades. Language activists, policy makers, and other invested parties share strategies across a wide-range of sociocultural, political, and geographic realities. As with any social or political movement, language revitalization is inherently embedded within the contexts of the communities in which such movements occur. These contexts include everything from the day-to-day lived experiences of community members, to overarching governmental systems and policies at all levels. Drawing on 10 years of research across multiple contexts including Chickasaw language revitalization efforts in South-central Oklahoma, the urban centers of San Francisco, CA; Tulsa, OK; and Chicago; IL, and teaching language activism strategies at the Collaborative Language (CoLANG) Institute, this talk examines various factors that both aid and impede language revitalization movements across Indigenous communities. Considering dynamics such as the role of government policies of removal, contemporary financial resources and tribal support for language documentation and reclamation efforts, and geographic distribution of Speakers and potential language learners, I will contextualize the factors that impact the types of language shifts that are possible. Most importantly, I demonstrate why some strategies might not work as effectively—or even be possible—across different communities even within the same region or language family, and examine the concrete ways communities are working with, around, or against these sociocultural dynamics toward a more vibrant future for Indigenous languages.

Sponsor: President’s Ambassador Network

FREE Hearing Screenings
Dr. Karen Patterson & Speech and Language Pathology Students
1:00p - 4:00p
UC 226, 2nd FL

Native Americans are at high risk for hearing loss caused by genetics, noise, medications, and ageing. As a service of the NSU Speech and Hearing Clinic, symposium guests are invited to come in for a hearing test. Just walk in and sign up.

Native Americans in Mainstream Media
Celia Xavier (Salish/Athabascan/Mayan)
2:30p - 3:15p
UC 222, 2nd FL

Inspire, Teach, Sustain, and Empower Students to Tell Their Digital Stories. Our mission is to empower the next generation to become storytellers with the latest possible technology. Simply, we are here to amplify your voice.

Who: Team up with students in the room
What: Brainstorm/hash out on a whiteboard what we will be filming
How: Digitally capture (film) using our iphones and ipads. Edit on iphone and ipads.
When: Screen it that same day. (we will create content based on how many are in the room)
Content will be recorded and may also be shared in September during the Tribal Film Festival

Maria Tallchief – Osage Prima Ballerina
Russ Tallchief (Osage), Shawnee Brittan
2:30p - 3:15p
UC 223-224, 2nd FL

Russ Tallchief shares insights into Maria Tallchief’s life and career as America's first Prima Ballerina, illustrated by Shawnee Brittan's film "En Pointe: The Lives and Legacies of Ballet's Native Americans."

Living Languages: Bringing Languages To Life Through Focused Cultural Activities
Bobbie Chew Bigby (Cherokee)
2:30p - 3:15p
UC 225, 2nd FL

With the rapid loss of Native languages across Oklahoma a concerning reality, new approaches for revitalization should be considered. This talk focuses on the importance of integrating language learning with traditional cultural activities.

Recording History: Preserving Cherokee Ways through Documentary Film and Television
Jennifer Loren (Cherokee)
3:30p - 4:30p
UC 223-224, 2nd FL

It cannot be lost, ever again. Learn how the Cherokee Nation is preserving its culture, history, language and ways of life through its groundbreaking and Emmy-winning program, "Osiyo, Voices of the Cherokee People."

Maintaining Cultural Capital through Tourism
Dr. Ben Kracht; Student Presenters: Brittany Cheater, Robert Kracht, Judy Cotter, Eric Love, Shannon Fincher
3:30p - 4:30p
UC 222, 2nd FL

Although the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico are noted for their cultural conservatism and aversion to outsiders, tourist programs allow visitors to experience living history at Acoma Pueblo and Zuni Pueblo, which are among the oldest continuously-inhabited communities in North America. During Spring Break 2017, NSU students toured these Pueblos to learn about their deep cultural heritage and the perseverance of tribal traditions in the modern world. Student presentations will highlight their experiences and cultural exchanges during our stay in Zuni Pueblo of western New Mexico.

Reconciliation: A Tool for Indigenous America?
Bobbie Chew Bigby (Cherokee)
3:30p - 4:30p
UC 225, 2nd FL

In Australia, the policy of Reconciliation has been explored as a way of fostering understanding among non-Indigenous peoples towards Aboriginal people and cultures. Could a similar policy framework and programs work here in the US to encourage greater understanding of American Indian people, cultures and issues?

Traditional Games
Cherokee Promise Scholars
3:00p - 5:00p

AISES Dinner with Keynote Presenter: TBD

5:30p - 7:30p
Redbud 302

More info to come soon.

Friday, April 14

General Session and Keynote Hosted by NSU AISES Chapter
9:45a - 10:50a
UC Ballroom, 2nd FL

Keynote: How to Create an Outlaw: The Case of Nede Wade Christie
Devon Mihesuah (Choctaw)
UC Ballroom, 2nd Floor

In May 1887, U.S. Deputy Marshal Dan Maples was shot and killed in Tahlequah, Indian Territory. Although several criminals were in the vicinity and any one of them could have been the culprit, the federal court at Fort Smith focused its attention on Nede Wade Christie, a Cherokee National Councilman and Adviser to the Chief. He denied the charge and spent the last five years of his life avoiding capture until 1892, when a posse destroyed his home with dynamite and shot him. This presentation will reveal the complexity of the "Ned Christie" saga. "Wild West" writers have manipulated information, fabricated tales, and duplicated unconfirmed reports in order to create the image of Nede as violent outlaw dispatched by heroic lawmen. Conversely, another group of authors, notably Phillip Steele and Bonnie Speer, have also engaged in narrative trickery to present him as innocent. Indeed, the opposing stories of Christie as the crazed and guilty outlaw and Christie as the innocent martyr are comfort tales for those who need to be reassured about the valor of their heroes. Utilizing data garnered from hundreds of newspapers, essays, oral testimonies, court documents, and outlaw/lawmen tall tales, this presentation will explore Nede Christie’s position within the genre of outlaw literature and how he got there. Was, and is, Christie considered an outlaw, a hero, or a bit of both?

Sponsor: Oklahoma Humanities Council

State of the Department of Cherokee and Indigenous Studies
Dr. Ben Kracht, NSU; Dr. Tiffanie Hardbarger (Cherokee), NSU, Dr. Candessa Tehee (Cherokee), NSU; Dr. Brad Montgomery-Anderson, NSU; Dr. Farina King (Diné), NSU; Dr. Kimberli Lee (Lakota), NSU; Dr. Diane Hammons (Cherokee), NSU; Dr. Virginia Whitekiller (Cherokee), NSU; Wyman Kirk (Cherokee)
11:00a - 11:50a
UC Ballroom, 2nd FL

The Department of Cherokee & Indigenous Studies offers three majors: American Indian Studies, Cherokee Education, and Cherokee Cultural Studies. Faculty representing eight academic disciplines will briefly discuss their current research.

Defend the Sacred Documentary Film, Followed by Q&A with Director Kyle Bell
Kyle Bell (Thlopthlocco Tribal Town)
1:00p - 1:50p
UC Ballroom, 2nd FL

"Defend The Sacred" is a short documentary that attempts to capture the spirit of Indigenous people at Standing Rock.

Producing Documentary Films
Jeremy Charles (Cherokee)
2:00p - 2:50p
UC 204, 2nd FL

The presentation will give an overview of the operation of a documentary film production, how the creative process works and how documentary is made.

Advanced Cherokee II Presentations
Dr. Candessa Tehee (Cherokee); Student Presenters: Angela Strozier, Lisa Davis Howard, Tony Owens, David Bender, Emma Dorman
2:00p - 2:50p
UC 222, 2nd FL

Cherokee language storytelling and brief presentations on Cherokee language by students of the Advanced Cherokee II class at Northeastern State University.

Traditional Stickball Game
Native American Student Association
3:00p - 5:00p
Beta Field

Observe the game traditionally referred to as “little brother of war” among Southeastern tribes. Audience participation is welcome. Signed waivers of liability are required.

Sponsor: Native American Student Association

Saturday, April 15

NSU Powwow
2:00p - 5:00 PM – Gourd Dancing
5:00 - 6:30 PM – Dinner Break
7:00 - Midnight – Grand Entry/Intertribal
UC Ballroom, 2nd FL

Sponsor: Oklahoma Arts Council