Water is Life: Who Decides What's Sacred?

Delivered By
Clay Jenkinson
Delivered On
April 2, 2017

Clay Jenkinson will talk about the ways in which Native Americans see resource questions differently from non-Indians. The talk will be based on Clay's reading of such books as John Neihardt's Black Elk Speaks, Paul vanDevelder's Coyote Warrior, and Morris Berman's The Re-Enchantment of the World. Clay will attempt to show that as long as the two cultures see basic questions of the human relationship with nature in fundamentally different ways, there will be confusion and conflict in resource questions. In other words, sovereignty is only one of a number of issues at the center of the DAPL controversy. Water issues leave a particularly "bad taste" in the mouths of Native Americans because of the military and economic colonialism of the Pick-Sloan Project that dammed the Missouri River six times between Fort Peck and Yankton, SD, between 1945-1965. This program is part of our Water Is Life series.

Clay Jenkinson is a public humanities scholar who loves North Dakota. He was born in Minot, grew up in Dickinson, lives in Bismarck, and considers the badlands south of Medora as his spiritual home.

Video version:  https://youtu.be/H4iHvWxyRUU