Native American Heritage Month

Native American performers infuse contemporary genres of dance and music with traditional elements from their Tribal heritage. Through artist interviews and performances, six profiles document the effort to bring this "Native Fusion" genre to mainstream performing arts.

The EPA calls the mining town of Picher, Oklahoma, the most toxic place in America, but the Quapaw Tribe still calls it home. Today, the town is divided by fears of serious health risks, environmental politics, civic pride and old racial tensions between the Quapaw people and the non-Indian community who share the town.

In 1918, not yet citizens of the United States, Choctaw members of the American Expeditionary Forces were asked to use their Native language as a powerful tool against the German Forces in World War I--setting a precedent for code talking as an effective military weapon and establishing them as America's original code talkers.

A lyrical road journey through the flat plains of Oklahoma, the film follows an older, estranged couple as they visit the stations of their fractured relationship. A frank, unsentimental love story, the film is also a love letter to the people and places of the director's home state.

In the turbulence of war, in a place where survival was just short of miraculous, the Aleuts of Alaska would redefine themselves and America. From indentured servitude and isolated internment camps, to Congress and the White House, this is the incredible story of the Aleut's decades-long struggle for our nation's ideals.

This series of five short videos features leaders addressing Native American women’s health. It is an online complement to the documentary Young Lakota to be broadcast on “Independent Lens” in 2013. Distributed electronically, the videos are particularly relevant to the contemporary experience of young people, girls and women in Indian Country. 

Urban Rez explores the controversial legacy and modern-day repercussions of the Urban Relocation Program (1952-1973), the greatest voluntary upheaval of Native Americans during the 20th century. During the documentary, dozens of American Indians representing tribal groups from across the West recall their first-hand experiences with relocation, including the early hardships, struggles with isolation and racism.

This documentary celebrates the spectacular beadwork of the Northwest Plateau People. The film provides a rare opportunity to experience Plateau culture through the eyes and hearts of artists, who share their history, motivation, and the beadwork that plays an important role in binding their culture together. Native Plateau beadwork is part of the rich tapestry of American culture. Plateau culture is unique and its story of survival a quintessentially American story.

When you hear the phrase "Native American music" you may not think of tubas, trumpets and Sousa marches. Yet, this rich musical tradition has been a part of Native American culture for over one hundred years. Sousa on the Rez: Marching to the Beat of a Different Drum is a half-hour documentary that offers viewers an unexpected and engaging picture of this little-known Native music scene.

The history of lacrosse in North America is a rich and multi-layered one. Much more than a Native American ball and stick game, lacrosse is a cultural window into Native American communities and their historical relationship with each other and the dominant culture.

N. Scott Momaday is a significant literary figure, who over a lifetime has created exquisite literary works in multiple genres. These works reflect his mythic roots in Kiowa culture and American Indian Oral Tradition. Primarily considering himself a poet, Momaday is able to articulate his Kiowa culture as well as Euro-American historic and literary narratives.

Two brothers from the Onondaga Nation pursue their dreams of playing lacrosse for Syracuse University. With the dream nearly in reach, the boys are caught in a constant struggle to define their Native identity, live-up to their family's expectations and balance challenges on and off the Reservation.

Follow-up series now available
The Medicine Game: Four Brothers, One Dream

Pages

 
Subscribe to Native American Heritage Month
 

Stations

A provocative film from the American Indian perspective that reframes today’s controversial energy debate while the fate of the environment hangs in the balance.

Filmmakers


Mohawk Women Reclaim Coming-of-age Ceremony
Wanted: Your Film Project Proposals
Giving Voice to Hidden Stories
Digital Distributor FNX
Job Opportunities
Film Festival Opportunities
Training and Other Opportunities
Funding Opportunities
Fellowship and Internship Opportunities

Educators

Complement classroom discussion about America's energy future with this film, and help students comprehend the debate about the best use of natural resources.