The Indian in American Society
After 1887


Daniel F. Littlefield, Jr.
Robert E. Sanderson



Wilcomb E. Washburn,  The Assault on Indian Tribalism
Francis Paul Prucha,  Documents of United States Indian Policy
Frederick E. Hoxie ed.,   Talking Back to Civilization
Edward H. Spicer,   A Short History of the Indians of the United States


This course will consist of six major units.

Unit 1: General overview of Indian history and government policies related to Indians leading to the General Allotment Act of 1887

Unit 2: The General Allotment Act, or Dawes Act, and its implications for American Indians:
Students will be concerned with the question of land tenure and arrive at conclusions about why individual land ownership was such a radical departure from traditional concepts of land holding and about the cultural devastation that resulted from implementing the allotment policy.

Unit 3: The assimilationist movement:
Students will study the movement that split Indian societies into so-called cultural "conservatives" and "progressives."

Unit 4: The revitalization movements:
(with emphasis on the Ghost Dance and Native American Church, or peyote church).

Unit 5: The declining economic status:
This unit focuses on the economic decline of Indians and the rising popularity of the "vanishing" American Indian concept.

Unit 6: The reform movement from the early 1920s to World War II:
Students will analyze the growing call for reform that resulted from poverty, disease, demoralization on the reservations, Indian participation in World War I, the citizenship Act of 1924, the Bursum Bill, and the Pueblo Lands Act. They will study the reform movement that was led by John Collier and others, who attempted to return federal Indian policy to the concept of cultural pluralism and brought about the passage of the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934, which provided for the reconstitution of many tribal entities as we know them today.


It is the policy of UALR to accommodate students with disabilities, pursuant to federal and state law. Any disabled student who needs accommodation, for example, in seating placement or in arrangements for examinations, should inform the instructor at the beginning of the course. The chair of the department offering this course is also available to assist with accommodations. Disabled students are also encouraged to contact the Office of Disability Support Services, located in the Donaghey Student Center, telephone 569-3143.