Alaska Native Peoples
Together these books address critical issues, correct historical inaccuracies, and authentically represent Alaskan Native cultures, communities, and peoples. They provide a strong set for teaching, and an introduction to the range of voices and issues related to Alaska Native cultures and communities today. All three are non-fiction works that address critical issues, correct historical and other inaccuracies, and authentically represent the Alaskan Native cultures and peoples. The companion reader offers links to selected creative writing by Alaska Natives. The books are short, appropriate for many different disciplines, and accessible to students from many backgrounds.
Yuuyaraq: The Way of the Human Being by Harold Napoleon outlines the initial effects and continuing impact of the epidemics that afflicted Alaska Natives from the 1770s through the 1940s. Napoleon’s premise is that this death on a massive scale wiped out the culture-bearers and left psychological and spiritual scars that continue today. Routes to healing are also discussed.
Growing up Native in Alaska by A.J. McClanahan includes interviews with 27 young Alaska Native leaders about their lives, their futures, the impact of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, and how they are “finding innovative and creative ways to live in two worlds.”
Do Alaska Native People Get Free Medical Care?* (and other frequently asked questions
about Alaska Native issues and cultures) has been prepared by UAA/APU faculty and Anchorage community members as a companion
to the Books of the Year. It provides responses to common questions about Alaska Native
issues (the answer to the title question is “no; they paid in advance”) and includes
recommended readings on a wide variety of topics including identity, language and
culture; subsistence; ANCSA; the effects of colonialism; education and health care;
and the future.
*No, they don’t. Find out more in book!