Oneida

Cree filmmaker Neil Diamond takes an entertaining and insightful look at the Hollywood Indian, exploring the portrayal of North American Natives through a century of cinema. Traveling through the heartland of America, Diamond looks at how the myth of "the Injun" has influenced the world's understanding--and misunderstanding--of Natives.

An inspirational writer, speaker and thought leader, Michelle Schenandoah-Powless is a member of the Oneida Indian Nation Wolf Clan of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.

Q. Why is it important to have films created, written, and produced by Natives in today’s media?

Injunuity is a collage of reflections on the Native American world, our shared past, our turbulent present, and our undiscovered future. From Columbus to the western expansion to tribal casinos, we are taught that the Native way, while at times glorious, is something of the past, something that needed to be replaced by a manifest destiny from across the ocean. But in a world increasingly short of real answers, it is time we looked to Native wisdom for guidance. It is time for some Injunuity.

The following are video chapters created to match with lesson plans outlined in the educational guide for Sousa on the Rez.

Click the title of the chapter to see video.

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.

“Having grown up only an hour away from the Onondaga Nation, I was always fascinated by the rumors I heard of what life was like there—tales of a lawless territory unsafe for outsiders. I had to see what life was really like on the Nation, not only to open my own eyes, but hopefully many others as ignorant as myself. I was introduced to the Thompson family and was mesmerized by their story, their personalities, and their openness to a complete stranger from California with a video camera.

The instructional television program, The Oneida Speak, is based in part on oral interviews of Oneida Indian elders in Wisconsin conducted between 1939-1941, as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project sponsored by the federal government. Several stories from these interviews are reenacted in this program, which also includes interviews of contemporary Oneida historians, cultural preservationists, and elders by program producers.

Michelle Danforth (Oneida)
"For me, it was about creating something that my son and his friends would want to watch. Lacrosse is so important to many Native people, so sharing a small piece of it is equally exciting. When I first started, all I knew was that my husband had played lacrosse long ago, but the more I have learned, the more fascinated I am to learn even more."

Patty Loew (Ojibwe)

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.

Blend traditional Oneida storytelling with modern media, providing a window to a world that no longer exists. A personal account written by the elders of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin during the early 1930s as it portrays the land grab policies carried out by government agents.

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