Native American Studies Exam #1

covebijo's version from 2017-09-27 19:19

Native American Stats

Question Answer
How many Native Americans in North America at time of the arrival of first Europeans in America (also called “time of first contact,” or “T.O.C.”)?12-15 million people
Approximate number of tribes at time of first contact with Europeans?500
2010 U.S. Census count of N.A. population, AIAN only? AIAN total, including mixed?2.9 million; 5.2 million
Percent of N.A. population on reservations and off reservations?22% on; 78% off

Contributions: Food

Question Answer
Identify some (about three) of the most important foods of N.A. origin.Corn, potatoes, and peanuts.
How many types of potatoes developed by Indians of the Andes Mts. of South America?3,800
Name the three favorite or most popular foods world-wide of NA origin.peanuts, potatoes, and corn.
What are the percent of the worlds cultivated plant foods that are of N.A. origin by volume (amount, or weight), and the percent by types (varieties)?55%; 60%

Contributions: Medicines/Hygiene

Question Answer
Identify some of the most important medicines of Native American origin and their uses (those mentioned in lecture).Quinine, Aspirin
How big of a world health problem was malaria before they became aware of the Indian medicine called “quinine”? (how many cases per year, how many deaths per year, worldwide)20 million cases; 5 million deaths
Name a tree common to this area that contains the medicinal ingredients found in aspirin.Cottonwood
Identify a plant first used by Native Americans that helps heal wounds.Agave or plantain
Identify two ways in which traditional Native American people had cleaner hygiene than most colonial era Europeans.Daily bathing and tooth brushing
In which century did tooth-brushing finally become common practice in the U.S.A.?20th century

Contributions: Inventions/Sports

Question Answer
Identify a few NA inventions.Canoe, Kayak, tooth brush, snowshoe
Why were team sports more common than individual sports in N.A. societies?Most were ceremonial (?)
Identify some popular team sports that are of American Indian originLacrosse, basketball, hockey
What are the four purposes for sports in NA tribal societies?Ceremonial, conflict resolution, health and physical conditions, social/recreational

Cosmology and Ceremony

Question Answer
Define cosmology. A “worldview,” perspective, or belief system that helps to explain the order and meaning of the universe (or, “world”) and guides people in their way of being and living.
What are the six basic elements of N.A. sacred traditions?Creator ("Great Spirit"); Entire creation is interrelated and interdependent; Ceremony shows our thanks; Morality and ethics were taught then passed down; People have responsibilities to keep world alive; Humor and laughter is apart of life.
Is the Great Spirit or Creator seen as equal in status to other spirit beings?Nope, not even.
What is the meaning of “reciprocal, interdependent relationship” between humans and the rest of creation?Interaction with spirit helpers helps the spirit world then they help the people.
What are geo-specific spirits and what do they do?Sent by Creator to a specific place, to help specific people in specific ways
What is the purpose of ceremony?To give thanks to the Creator for keeping the world alive.

Cosmology and Ceremony continued

Question Answer
Why did he say “medicine people,” instead of “medicine men?”Medicine people can be men or women.
What is the role of spirit guardian beings, and the importance of humor?Guardian beings help us commune with the spirit world; laughter is an essential part of life, for learning, empowerment, and healing.
Did the spirit helper characters in Indian stories ever make mistakes?yes
Difference between "knowledge of the ways" and "knowledge of the beings".Ways: transferred from elder to younger. Beings: direct encounters with spirits.
Identify the two main types of NA creation stories.Earth Diver and Emergence.
Which tribe calls the world that we are in now the “Glittering World?”Navajo
What elements of the creation or origin stories do many cultures share in common, worldwide?Helper beings existed with Creator prior; sequence of creation; post creation mop up; gave instructions to people.
Identify some common values taught through N.A. wisdom stories.Humility, Generosity, Honesty
Significance of being a “lucky” person.More blessed in the spirit world, honors the world more, has more balance.
Importance of balance and the number 4 in native cosmology, examples in nature.Signifies balance with all things. Ex: 4 seasons, 4 directions, 4 stages of life.


Question Answer
Define sustainable resource use.Taking from the earth only what each ecosystem can afford to give, and allowing or helping those resources to be replenished.
Define subsistence economics.Living directly from the natural resource base, without the use of money or the need for trade
Why did he refer to this topic (indigenous economics) as “applied spirituality?Really it's economics based on cosmology, instructions from the spirit world.
What is more important than human needs in deciding how much of each resource to harvest from the earth? The Spirit World decides what each ecosystem can give up at that time or season.
How does the success of subsistence economics depend on population size?You can only have a population that the ecosystem can support.
Two reasons for trade in traditional N.A. economics.Maintain stable relationships and to obtain luxury items.
Controlled burns had to be combined with what other traditional practice in order to work to the benefit of all life?Wood-gathering practices had to maintain a stable ecosystem, not a build up of fuel.
What were the benefits of controlled burns to the various species? Prevented massive fires, put nutrients in the ground, provide better grazing, prepare land of farming.


Question Answer
The difference between indigenous and "western" concepts of time. Determined by natural events, 13 months out of a year.
Why is “Indian time” also called “natural time?”It is determined by natural events, not a fixed system.
Average work hours per week if all work done during an entire year was averaged out.20 hours (?)
What is the meaning of “first fruit time”? When the fruit is first becoming fresh for the people to gather.
How did the originally abundant natural resource base effect the amount of time that pre-European contact Native Americans had to put into their art?Had more time to create art when things are plentiful.


Question Answer
What were the main purposes of traditional tribal government?To ensure the economic well-being of the tribe;Problem-solving and social stability; Protect tribe from enemies
Meaning of “consensus” and why this decision-making method worked better than voting for tribal societies.Had to have a unanimous agreement so nothing could come between the tribal societies.
Why were there no jails in pre-Euro contact tribal societies?Prevention, then punishments according to the seriousness of the crime.
Why was exile, or being banned from your tribe, considered to be the harshest form of punishment for traditional American Indian people?You had to survive on your own in the wild, the others tribes would rarely take you in. The spirit world also looked at banning as being shamed, or exiled from the spirit world as well.
What are the 5 traditional Indian leadership traits?Generosity, wisdom, mediator, bravery, fairness.


Question Answer
What natural animal product did Indians use to embroider with before they received the little glass beads from Europe?Porcupine needles.
What are the five types of artistic activity? (look at coursepack in order to determine)
What type of information was traditionally recorded on a “winter count” painting?The events of the year, visitors, such like that.