Anth147ReadingResponse3 - Carolyn Johnson ANTH 147...

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Carolyn Johnson ANTH 147, recitation section: Thurs. 3:30 Reading Response 4 Discuss the multiple effects of colonialism and US policies of assimilation on residents of Kodiak Island and surrounding Native villages (include physical, social, and spiritual effects). The United State’s influence over the Alutiiq people after the acquisition of Alaska as an organized territory in 1912 and even more so after statehood in 1959 was typical of imperial colonialism. By the time Mulcahy begins her research in the territory, most women deliver their children in hospitals, the native language is all but lost to the younger generations, and most of the locals declared their culture, “too long dominated by outsiders, ‘dead’” (Mulcahy 11). Prior to US involvement in Alaska, the Russians brought some Western medicine and built a hospital on Kodiak, but they also brought a vast number of illnesses, including smallpox, influenza and sexually transmitted diseases that wreaked havoc on the local populations, more than any other aspect of colonization. The US’s treaty purchase of Alaska mandated that the new government maintain the established Russian healthcare, but the health care system quickly disintegrated and services disappeared in the area. Health services of the early 20 th century were by and large provided “in the old way by family members or local healers” states a letter to the Bureau of Education (Mulcahy 45-6). It seems from the anecdotes delivered by Mulcahy that
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