Monday, October 13, 2008

Today is indigenous Peoples Day

University of Arkansas Celebrates Indigenous Peoples Day; Show Time Corrected on Film

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Indigenous Peoples Day is designed to celebrate and honor the traditions and history of indigenous groups of the world. The University of Arkansas indigenous peoples committee has chosen Columbus Day, Oct. 12 through 13, to celebrate indigenous people.

The OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology will present the film When the Mountains Tremble (1983) at 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 12, at the United Campus Ministries at 902 West Maple at Storer Avenue in Fayetteville. Screentime is 83 minutes. Admission is free.

This documentary is about the war between Guatemalan military and the Mayan population. It contains a firsthand account from Nobel Peace Prize winner Rigoberta Menchu. Political anthropologist Nick Copeland spent two years examining the relationship between rural indigenous organization and the Guatemalan state, focusing on how state violence and developmental programs shape contemporary politics in Mayan communities and indigenous experiences of democracy. He will be present to speak about this research and answer questions raised by the film, or to discuss more recent developments.

On Monday, Oct. 13, both Mullins Library and the University of Arkansas Bookstore will display books about Columbus and the introduction of European influence in the Americas.

At 11 a.m. in the Multicultural Center, there will be a book forum on the consequences of the Western conquest and occupation of Native Americans. Panelists for the event include Freddie Bowles, assistant professor of foreign language education in the College of Education and Health Professions at the University of Arkansas; Carl Barnwell, a University of Arkansas graduate and a city councilman of a township near Tahlequah, Okla.; and Dick Bennett, a retired professor of English and the founder of the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology.

At noon, a film will be shown in the Arkansas Union Connections Lounge. Guns, Germs, and Steel (2005) is a three-part television series produced for PBS. The third episode, “Into the Tropics,” will be shown. In this series Jared Diamond presents his 30-year research into global inequality. He looks into why Europeans were the ones to conquer so much of the planet, why the tropics are the center for global poverty, and many other issues. Episode three deals specifically with European failure in Africa and the role that guns, germs, steel and geography had to play in it. Following the film, the Honors Film Association students will lead readings from books about Columbus’ influence on indigenous people in the Americas. Any other interested parties are encouraged to participate as well.

After these readings, at 2 p.m. participants will make the annual walk from the Arkansas Union to the Trail of Tears Memorial on Sixth Street. This memorial commemorates the spot where a group of a thousand Cherokees camped in Fayetteville during their forced journey into Indian Territory in 1839.



Frank Scheide, associate professor, communications
J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences

Scott Flanagin, director of communications and outreach
Division of Student Affairs


Anonymous said...

I did a post on this too. Indigenous Peoples Day: Replacing Columbus Day. Glad to see others blogging about this. Together we can raise the consciousness as to what this sad day really signifies for Native peoples.

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