ERIC Number: ED127094
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1975-Jun
The American Indian: A Very Private People.
Chan, Carole; Hamby, John
American Indian urban immigration has put between 33% and 50% of all Indians in urban settings where they invariably are subjected to an initial cultural shock. Leaving the reservation to improve their socioeconomic status, Indians find urban adjustment extremely difficult. The Anglo culture is inherently opposed to the "Indian Way", for it emphasizes competitiveness, individualism, and conflict. While Indians differ considerably from tribe to tribe, in an urban setting they seek one another out and assert an identity which is distinctly Indian and different from the Anglo identity. In order to establish a reasonable relationship with the Indian, the Anglo must learn to recognize and accept the Indian's cultural differences. Among the more important cultural differences to be recognized are the Indian's: dislike of friendly imposition; need for passive observance prior to social participation; soft spoken manner; subtle rather than overt expression of friendship; reluctance to bargain, argue, or otherwise prove himself; high esteem for privacy and non-interference; identification with the group rather than the individual; tolerant sense of time; and subtle physical expression. Among the Indian cultural practices most often retained in the urban setting are: Indian foods and languages; modest clothing; sharing; tolerance; pow-wow attendance; and trips back home for spiritual rejuvenation. (JC)
Publication Type: Guides - General
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations, CA.
Note: Revised edition