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ERIC Number: EJ788148
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 15
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0095-182X
Learning from Foxwoods: Visualizing the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation
Anthes, Bill
American Indian Quarterly, v32 n2 p204-218 Spr 2008
Since the passage in 1988 of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, which recognized the authority of Native American tribal groups to operate gaming facilities free from state and federal oversight and taxation, gambling has emerged as a major industry in Indian Country. Casinos offer poverty-stricken reservation communities confined to meager slices of marginal land unprecedented economic self-sufficiency and political power. Plains Cree artist, critic, and curator Gerald McMaster has asked, "As aboriginal people struggle to reclaim land and to hold onto their present land, do their cultural identities remain stable? When aboriginal government becomes a reality, how will the local cultural identities act as centers for nomadic subjects?" Foxwoods Casino, a vast and highly profitable gaming, resort, and entertainment complex on the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation in southwestern Connecticut, might serve as a test case for McMaster's question. Rather than being deterritorialized by mortgaging their nationhood to overseas investors, the Pequots have managed to harness the centrifugal forces of the global marketplace to shore up their own centripetal claims to a place-based identity, pouring casino profits into an impressive array of community-building projects. The Pequots have succeeded in turning precisely those economic forces that have devastated so many other rural and traditional communities to their own advantage. In this article, the author examines how the Pequots have embraced multinational corporations and the boundless international space of late capitalism to underwrite their exemption from state and local authority and shore up an expression of tribal sovereignty and the bounded space of the reservation. He analyzes how Pequot nationhood is given visual form at Foxwoods Casino and considers why and for whom such representations are staged. (Contains 22 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Connecticut