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Celebrating Indigenous Cultures

Celebrate Native American & Alaska Natives Heritage Month with these special programs and streaming content!

November is Native American and Alaska Native Heritage Month. The celebration of Indigenous cultures began as a week-long celebration in 1986, when President Reagan proclaimed the week of November 23-30, 1986 as "American Indian Week." Every President since 1995 has issued annual proclamations designating the month of November as the time to celebrate the cultures, accomplishments, and contributions of Native American and Alaska Native communities.

 

WQPT PBS Feature

Tuesday, November 16 | 11:00PM

Hunting in Wartime

This documentary profiles Tlingit veterans from Hoonah, Alaska who saw combat during the Vietnam War. The veterans talk about surviving trauma, relating to Vietnamese communities, readjusting to civilian life, and serving a government that systematically oppresses native people. Their stories give an important human face to the combat soldier and show the lasting affects of war on individuals, families and communities.

WQPT PBS Feature

Thursday, November 18  | Starting at 8:00PM

Lost Nation: The Ioway

In the twilight of a Native American empire, two Ioway brothers travel to Washington, D. C. in 1824 to meet with Superintendent of Indian Affairs, William Clark. Both sign a treaty ceding a large portion of tribal land for settlement. White Cloud sees cooperation as the only way for his people to survive, while Great Walker regrets the loss of land where his ancestors are buried. More territory is lost, and the Ioway people are divided, with some regarding one brother as a traitor, and the other as a patriot.

The Warrior Tradition

The largely-untold story of Native Americans who served in the United States military.

WQPT PBS Feature

Tuesday, November 23 | 11:00PM

Almost an Island

A cinematic portrait of the Goodwins, an Inupiat family living above the Arctic Circle in Kotzebue, Alaska. Through observing three generations of one family over four years, the documentary explores what it means to be indigenous in the dramatically changing Arctic. A multi-generational family, reveals their memories, dreams and goals, and challenging common stereotypes to show the Goodwins as complex, dignified individuals.

WQPT PBS Feature

Thursday, November 25 | 9:00PM

Good Earth

A fascinating and forgotten story of the Blood Run National Historic Landmark as told by a Native American grandfather to his grandchildren. The documentary combines vivid present-day views of the park's scenic vistas and wildlife with dramatic historical reenactments portraying daily life in the year 1650. The Good Earth site in Iowa and South Dakota was occupied between 1500 and 1725 by ancestors of the present-day Ioway, Omaha, Ponca and Oto tribes, making it one of the oldest long-term habitation sites in the United States.

WQPT PBS Feature

Thursday, November 25 | 9:30PM

Without a Whisper Konnón:Kwe

Explore the untold story of how Indigenous women influenced the early suffragists in their fight for freedom and equality. Mohawk Clan Mother Louise Herne and Professor Sally Roesch Wagner shake the foundation of the established history of the women’s rights movement in the US joining forces to shed light on the hidden history of the influence of Haudenosaunee Women on the women’s rights movement.

WQPT PBS Feature

Thursday, November 25 | 10:00PM

Battle Over Bears Ears

Explore the deep connections to place and the vast cultural divides that are fueling the fight over how the Bears Ears Monument is protected and managed. At its heart, it’s a battle for homeland and sovereignty. Bears Ears, a remote section of land lined with red cliffs and filled with juniper, sage, is at the center of a fight over who has a say in how Western landscapes are protected and managed.

American Masters

Filmmaker Ben-Alex Dupris explores how the reality and resistance of Native Americans inspire the work of Pawnee artist Bunky Echo-Hawk, igniting discussions about environmentalism, Native rights, and numerous other current topics.

Maria Tallchief (Osage)

The first American to dance with the Paris Opera Ballet was the magnetic ballerina Maria Tallchief. (1978)

The Sacred Cypher

Indigenous dancers from the many different tribes come together to tell their stories through the art of dance.

Zitkála-Šá (Yankton Sioux)

Gertrude Simmons Bonnin was born in 1876 on the Yankston Reservation, but later renamed herself Zitkála-Šá which means "red bird" in the Lakota language.

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