Path to Sovereignty

Fall 2014 quarter

Taught by

Indigenous studies, Tribal sovereignty and self-government, constitutional legal history and public policy in the US, Canada and New Zealand

This course, the first of the 1st Year Tribal Concentration Courses, relates the historical foundations for federal Indian policy to the contemporary legal and political issues confronting Indian Nations and their respective governments. The focus will be upon the scope and nature of the inherent right and responsibility of tribal sovereignty and self-government.  Particular focus will be given to the legal and public policy developments impacting upon all Indigenous Peoples, and the specific ramifications for Indian Nations in the United States.  Readings and discussions will cover the historical period from prior to European contact, through the implementation of the 1934 Indian Reorganization Act. From there, an examination of key legal cases and statutes will be undertaken, as well as significant law and public policy issues such as Termination, Public Law 280, the Indian Civil Rights Act, and the Public Law 93-638 Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act.  Our goal in this first quarter is to gain understanding of the historical origins of the current laws and policies that constitute the legal, economic, social and political foundations for the environment in which tribal sovereignty operates today and the leadership and persistence of Tribes in the policy formation process.

Program Details

Location and Schedule

Campus location

Tribal MPA


Offered during: Day and Weekend

Advertised schedule: Nov 14-16, Dec 5-7, 1-5p Fri, 9a-5p Sat/Sun


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Online Learning

Enhanced Online Learning: Access to web-based tools required, but use of these tools does not displace any face-to-face instruction.

Registration Information

Credits: 4 (Fall)

Class standing: Graduate

Maximum enrollment: 35


Course Reference Number

(4 GR credits): 10246

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