Migration of the First Nations 2010

Migration of the First Nations 2010 - Migration of the...

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Unformatted text preview: Migration of the First Nations Nations 40,000 BCE­1000 CE? The traditional racial assumptions of biogenetics and anthropology. Epistemology: How do we know what we know? History, Ideology, Myth and Science: Why Science Will Never Be Exact • History does produce “facts,” but facts are useless without a diagnostic context – Things happen and they happened the way they happened – But why they happened that way is reinterpreted by every generation, and every person in it, through the lens of their own experience and ideology • The scientific method can produce facts, but they too are useless with a diagnostic context – These contexts must be interpreted – and are reinterpreted too, just as above • Myths, too, are produced and reinterpreted by each generation and give meaning to the culture – Some last and some don’t but they are more durable than facts and, in fact, don’t need many facts Myth and Ideology • Since the purpose of myth is to provide a logical model capable of overcoming a contradiction (an impossible achievement if, as it happens, the contradiction is real), a theoretically infinite number of slates [ie. variants] will be generated, each one slightly different than the other. Thus the myth grows spiral-wise until the intellectual impulse which has produced it is exhausted. Its growth is a continual process, whereas its structure remains discontinuous. - Claude Levi Strauss, The Structure of Myth • One might also add that maintenance of myth is thus inevitably impossible. What Makes Us Individuals? What Race, Ethnicity and The Elements of Identity. Elements of Personal Identity (rank in order of importance) race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexual identity, national identity, political affiliation, religion, profession, etc. How do you identify yourself in terms of ethnic/racial background? – Ex. Hispanic, Latino/Latina, Chicano/Chicana, Mexican­American, Mexican, etc. Race and Ideology Race Ideas about color, like ideas about anything else, derive their importance, indeed their very definition, from their context. It is the ideological context that tells people which details to notice, which to ignore, and which to take for granted in translating the world around them into ideas about the world. The idea one people has of another, even when the difference between them is embodied in the most striking physical characteristics, is always mediated by the social context within which the two come into contact. The view that race is a biological fact . . . is no longer tenable. Race . . . is a purely ideological notion. Once ideology is stripped away, nothing remains except an abstraction which, while meaningful to the statistician, could scarcely have inspired all the mischief that race has caused during its malevolent historical career. The material concept on which the concept purports to rest – the biological inequality of human beings – is spurious. There is only one human species, and the most dramatic differences can be wiped out in one act of miscegenation. That does not mean that race is unreal: all ideologies are real, in that they are the embodiment in thought of real social relations. Barbara Fields, Race and Ideology in American History The Ideological Wheel The Ideology tion Rej tora ion ect Res Reformulation Experience Reflexivity With apologies to the Anglican Church What is Ideology? What All ideologies are real; they are the embodiment in thought of social relations. Ideologies offer a ready­made interpretation of the world, a sort of hand­me­down vocabulary with which to name the elements of every new experience. Ideologies are the eyes through which people see social reality, the form in which they experience it in their own consciousness. ­ Barbara Fields, Ideology and Race Experience Experience “Life is not determined by consciousness, but consciousness by life.” - Karl Marx, The German Ideology "I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging the future but by the past.“ - Patrick Henry, American Revolutionary Reflexivity Reflexivity “ . . . to be truly reflexive, where the same person(s) are both subject and object, [the observer and the observed] violence has to be done to commonsense ways of classifying the world and society. The self is ‘split up the middle’ – it is something that one both is and one sees and, furthermore, acts upon as though it were another.” - Victor Turner, The Anthropology of Performance Reformulation Reformulation "Precisely because ideologies consist of contradictory and inconsistent elements, they can undergo fundamental change simply through a reshuffling of those elements into a different hierarchy."[1] On why ideologies are restored and not reformulated (or the ­ Barbara Fields, Ideology and Race [1] “Ideology and Race in American History,” in Kouser and James M. McPherson, eds., Region, Race and Reconstruction (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982), p. 154. need to change is rejected): “Attitudes are promiscuous critters and don’t mind cohabiting with their opposites.” Rejection and Restoration Rejection Sometimes people have experiences that challenge their basic assumptions about the world, but don’t result in bringing about a change in their ideology or world view. The first way is that they go into a state of denial and never become reflexive – “I don’t even want to think about it – not gonna’ go there.” They reject the need to change their thinking about life and the world. The second is that they do become reflexive, thoughtful about how an experience challenges their ideology, but decide they don’t need to change, or perhaps just adjust their world view a little. They essentially restore their old Ideology. But First, SomeTerminology • BCE: Before Common Era • CE: Common Era • Replaces older terminology of B.C. or “Before Christ” and A.D. or anno Domini, “Year of our Lord” which arranged historical calendars from the estimated year of the birth of Jesus • Does not functionally change western calendar Migration of the First Nations Nations 40,000 BCE­1000 CE? The traditional racial assumptions of biogenetics and anthropology. First Encounter: The Misuses of Science So, Today’s Word is . . . • “Magister Dixit” – “because the teacher said so” • The Status and Art of the Expert: – Schopenhauer warns: “it is necessary to separate with clarity the discovery of the objective truth, from the art of making its own thesis an accepted truth” – Schopenhauer: “the main task of the scientific dialectic is to explore and to analyze the strategies of the disloyalty when discussing, so in the real controversies, we are immediately able to recognize it and annihilate it”. In this subject, it’s hard to find. Personality and Status: Academics are as protective about their own long­held assumptions as anyone Heretics: New theories take a while to garner evidence Race and Ethnicity: Still alive and well in Academia • • • • New comers, younger professors are not accepted easily Why It’s Hard Present New Evidence Evidence If you think academics are “progressive,” think again Professors grant tenure to “people like them.” Elite universities are dominated by white male professors: they don’t concede ground to women or racial/ethnic challengers, or the non­tenured Two Contenders for Oldest Human Settlement and Why They Remain Suspect Settlement The Topper Site: Savanah River, South Carolina Pedra Furada: Brazil, 50­60,000 Years Ago • Al Goodyear, 52,000 years ago • Many of the professionals queried by this author on the second day of the conference stated that they thought the oldest Topper material to be only naturally formed rocks, but over half of these admitted they had not even briefly looked at them. New finds in 2007­09 bolster theory of earlier habitation. • Niede Guidon • "There is a feeling that it's a blow against U.S. imperialism. The evidence is open to different interpretations, so people tend to choose their favorite interpretation in terms of their biases. There is a certain tendency to cast aspersions on other people's excavation techniques.” • "The whole thing is very fraught. People get very defensive and sensitive.” • "The problem is that the Americans criticize without knowing. The problem is not mine. The problem is theirs. Americans should excavate more and write less." Skulls found in Baja Indicate Aboriginal Origins Dating Back Perhaps Tens of Thousands of Years (DNA evidence) We Still Have More Questions than Answers More When did the first migrants come? Why did they migrate to America? Where did they come from? How did they get here? Asia probably, Pacific Islands, Europe maybe. Constantly changing theories: 8­40,000 BCE. Following Mammoth Migrations, for some at least. Coasting? What explains the diversity of cultures? Cultural evolution, diversity of origins? Probably walked, maybe sailed. Still the Dominant Theory (but fading): The Bering Land Bridge Theory First Proposed by a Jesuit priest, Jose de Acost, (1539-1600) (theory: 1585) Glaciers and Migration in the Wisconsin Glaciations Period Wisconsin Animated Map of North America The Recession of Glacial Ice Courtesy of the Illinois State Museum Animated Map of Human Settlement in North America Courtesy of the Illinois State Museum On the trail of the wooly mammoth? "It's one of the biggest crap deposits known." The Three Wave Theory The Paleo-Indians Amerind, Nadene and Eskaleut • Based on Linguistic Studies Archeolgical Evidence Wisconsin Glaciation Period, 90,000­8,000 BCE • Ushki Site and Broken Mammoth Site Archaic Period, 9,000­5,000 BCE • Frozen seawater trapped in ice cap/sea level drops exposing land across the 56 mile Bering Straight Clovis Cultures • Development of New Tools/Technologies: Fishhooks, Small Game Traps, Baskets, Skin Containers, Baskets, Heated Stones for Boiling Water, Boats, Domesticated Dogs • Clovis Site in Arizona • Spear Points and Tools New Technologies Atlatl Domesticated Dog -- with Hats 13000-11000 BCE Clovis Points Mitochondrial DNA Mitochondrial Matrilineal DNA Only Considered Relatively Accurate in Tracing Lineage/Change over Time Merriwether’s Study • • Challenges the Three Wave Theory Each Group Contains Traces of All Three • Inherited From Mother Only Some contain all nine language subgroups Unrealistic for DNA to mixed across two continents from three migrations Could it be one wave? Coasting: Maybe Not a Land Migration Use of Boats to Travel Longer Distances Perhaps Evolved Much Earlier Than Previously Thought Migrants could have followed ice sheets and coast up from Japan and down coast of the Americas. Some may have come from Pacific Islands. Evidence Based on Mitochondrial DNA Staying Alive: Diversity and Modes of Subsistence Diversity as a Fact of Life Diversity Most Likely Diverse Origins in Asia Languages diversified with continuous migration Diverse cultures arose from pre­historic times Diverse food sources of early American Tribes Only one universal fact remains unchallenged: If you go back far enough, we are all Africans ...
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This note was uploaded on 03/18/2010 for the course HIST 245 taught by Professor Carlson during the Spring '10 term at Canada College.

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