This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner Home Page About ANKN Publications Academic Programs Curriculum Resources Calendar of Events Announcements Site Index This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner This is part of the ANKN Banner
Native Pathways to Education
Alaska Native Cultural Resources
Indigenous Knowledge Systems
Indigenous Education Worldwide
 

Holding Our Ground Part 5


Holding Our Ground

"Programs are presented as broadcast in 1985 and 1986. Some of the issues may have changed. A new series is looking at how these issues have changed over time. For more program information please contact the producer: Jim Sykes, PO Box 696, Palmer, AK 99645. The address given at the end of the program is no longer correct."

Quicktime Sound
(13 MB)

MP3
(13 MB)

Windows Media
(7 MB)

Flash Sound
(3.1 MB)

TapeAlaska Transcripts, PO Box 696, Palmer, AK 99645
HOLDING OUR GROUND
(c) 1985 Western Media Concepts, Inc.
"TRADITIONAL COUNCILS AND CORPORATE BOARDROOMS"
(Part 5 of 16)

[Tommy Oongtagook] The Act, passed by Congress in 1971, brought about a shotgun union which married the placid Native people in their Arctic environment to that cherished modern American Institution, the corporation. And who can be sure of that marriage, I don't know.

[NARRATOR] PROFIT AND PRIVATE LAND OWNERSHIP WERE STRANGE AND POWERFUL IDEAS TO ALASKA NATIVES WHEN CONGRESS PASSED ANCSA--THE ALASKA NATIVE CLAIMS SETTLEMENT ACT. WHILE ANCSA ABOLISHED ABORIGINAL LAND TITLE, IT DID NOT ELIMINATE TRADTIONAL NATIVE GOVERNMENTS. NOW THE CORPORATIONS HOLD THE LAND, THE FUTURE OF ALASKA NATIVES WILL BE DECIDED IN BOTH TRIBAL COUNCILS AND CORPORATE BOARDROOMS. THIS IS HOLDING OUR GROUND.

FUNDING FOR "HOLDING OUR GROUND" IS PROVIDED BY THE ALASKA HUMANITIES FORUM, THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE HUMANITIES, RURAL ALASKA COMMUNITY ACTION PROGRAM, THE NORTH SLOPE BOROUGH, AND ZIONTZ-PIRTLE LAW FIRM.

We were trying to extinguish a claim and we devised a notion to do it with a combination of land and money, and the implication of that was that good things would subsequently happen because good things generally do happen with abundant land and money.

What we were trying to do there was consciously avoid a womb approach of endless trusts...we were really doing some social engineering.

DOUG JONES HELPED WRITE THE ALASKA NATIVE CLAIMS SETTLEMENT ACT WHEN HE WAS A SENATE AIDE. HE CALLS THE ACT A SOCIAL EXPERIMENT, AN ATTEMPTED TO AVOID SOME OF THE HARDSHIPS OF LIFE ON INDIAN RESERVATIONS. WHILE NOBODY WANTED TO REPEAT PAST MISTAKES, ANCSA BROUGHT ALIEN ORGANIZATIONS TO NATIVE CULTURE.

We were trying to accomplish some things socially, we were trying to accomplish some things individually, that is for individual Natives and not just collectively. And that's why we had a mix of things that had to do with individuals and things that had to do with collectivism. A movement towards business as usual, a movement toward providing a sameness for the Native population, that is being like everybody else. We probably misjudged the fierceness with which the Native community cared about the land portion of the settlement.

...And it appears that Congress and the Secretary of Interior put upon us their own version of its dream for our future. We know now, and realize, they expect us to eventually turn into mainstream citizens with no basis in the land. This position is contrary to the basic desires of our people who view the land and continued ownership of the land as necessary for the survival of our way of life.

LONNIE O'CONNER ECHOED HUNDREDS OF ALASKA NATIVES WHO TESTIFIED ON THE EFFECTS OF ANCSA AT THE HEARINGS OF THE ALASKA NATIVE REVIEW COMMISSION. DURING 1984 AND 85, COMMISSIONER THOMAS BERGER VISITED 60 COMMUNITIES TO FIND OUT HOW ALASKA NATIVES VIEW THE CLAIMS ACT--AND THE CHANGES IT BROUGHT.

What Congress did was, they said "you are all shareholders now and you have a form of private property known as a share and a corporation and you do not as a tribe own this land anymore. And Congress obviously intended that in twenty years time, those shares would go on the market and that people would sell their shares and get money or moneys worth and use the money to buy snowmachines or fix up their houses, or buy other shares, buy shares in General Motors; that Native ancestral lands would after 1991, become mingled with privately held lands in Alaska generally, and that there would be nothing distinctive, after 1991, about Native corporations. They would just be corporations with some Native shareholders, some non-Native shareholders. It was clearly the intention. Now nobody, no other settlement, that I'm aware of, either before or since adopted that particular method of settling the claim.

HISTORICALLY, ANCESTRAL LANDS COULD NOT BE BOUGHT, SOLD, OR LOST TO CREDITORS. THE BLANKET SETTLEMENT EXTINGUISHED ABORIGINAL TITLE AND DECLARED 44 MILLION ACRES--ABOUT ONE-TENTH OF ALASKA TO BE OWNED BY CORPORATIONS.

Corporate management was as alien to the Natives as E.T. [Jerry Isaac, Tanacross]

NATIVE GOVERNMENTS WERE LEFT OUT OF THE SETTLEMENT. NOW THE CORPORATIOONS WERE LANDOWNERS, TRIBAL GOVERNMENTS LOST MUCH OF THEIR INFLUENCE. WHEN ANCSA WAS PASSED, FEW PEOPLE UNDERSTOOD HOW CORPORATIONS WORKED AND MANY QUESTIONED WHETHER THEY COULD REPLACE TRIBAL COUNCILS.

In the past, our leaders were the Elders who the had knowledge on life from their wisdom in their longlife. (LEAH ATAKTLIG). Now young people, as corporate leaders, are dictating to the Elders but they don't have the knowledge and the wisdom of the Elders. Although young leaders have the knowledge of the white man's way, are they going to keep our traditions and cultures alive?

CORPORATIONS BROUGHT POWERFUL CHANGES ALONG WITH A CONFUSION OF ROLES. COMMUNAL VALUES WERE PITTED AGAINST INDIVIDUAL ONES. COMPETITION AND PROFIT CAME TO SOCIETIES THAT ONCE SURVIVED BY SHARING. CORPORATE MATTERS WERE RESOLVED BY MANAGEMENT AND PROXY VOTES, UNLIKE TRIBAL DECISIONS BY CONSENSUS. IN THE VILLAGES OF SOUTHWEST ALASKA, YUP'IK ELDERS MADE THEIR DECISIONS IN THE QASGIQ.

EVON JOHN.
But whatever happened and the activities that happened within the community, were always scheduled and done by the approval of the Elders in the qasgiq. Because that was the political unit base of that community. That is where consensus is derived. And consensus from the governing body of that community was from the qasgiq. And the Elders were never disregarded in that respect because at the qasgiq was where the men slept, where they ate, and where they worked, and where they did all the scheduling and the political base of the community, and the consensus of the community was done in the qasgiq, which in actual essence is probably the congress of the Native community.

ALEUT, ATHABASCAN, AND IÑUPIAQ COUNCILS WORKED IN SIMILAR WAYS. LILLY MCGARVEY.
... in the Aleutians we have the chiefs and councils, the higher chiefs and the lesser chiefs, and they were the ones that decided everything for the villages.

We move a little slow, but the Athabascan systems of government have always been slow. SPUD WILLIAMS. Decisions of any importance usually take two to three years. Consensus government is not a fast government. It is a very, very slow type of government system. But when it's done, it's done; people can live with it. That settlement was a very, very important document and it was rushed through without enough discussion, people discussion.

TRADITIONAL LAWS WERE HANDED DOWN THRU GENERATIONS BY WORD OF MOUTH. WHEN THE I-R-A, OR INDIAN REORGANIZATION ACT WAS PASSED IN 1934, SOME VILLAGES ACCEPTED WRITTEN CONSTITUTIONS WHICH WERE LATER RECOGNIZED BY THE SECRETARY OF INTERIOR. OTHER VILLAGES CONTINUED USING THEIR TRADITIONAL COUNCILS. IN BOTH CASES, ELDERS WERE THE MAJOR DECISION-MAKERS.

FRANCIS DEGNAN.
In speaking with the Elders, I found out that we as Eskimos have always had councils. They weren't formalized, in our village until 1927, and in 1934 Unalakleet became an I.R.A. Council, the Native village of Unalakleet. They elected their council people and they looked toward them to do the guidance in the community and to protect what was rightfully theirs.

SOME 200 I-R-A AND TRADITIONAL GOVERNMENTS WERE FUNCTIONING WHEN THE CLAIMS ACT CREATED NATIVE CORPORATIONS. THE NEW CORPORATIONS WERE SOMETIMES CALLED MODERN-DAY TRIBES--BUT THEY WERE VASTLY DIFFERENT.

WHILE MOST CORPORATIONS ARE FORMED TO MEET A SPECIFIC BUSINESS GOAL, NATIVE CORPORATIONS WERE NOT. THE 12 REGIONAL AND OVER 200 VILLAGE CORPORATIONS WERE FIRST CREATED BY ANCSA AND THEN ORDERED TO FIND A WAY TO SURVIVE IN THE BUSINESS WORLD. SUCH A PROSPECT WAS INCONCEIVABLE TO SOME VILLAGERS WHO HARDLY SPOKE ENGLISH, BUT WERE THRUST INTO CORPORATE POSITIONS.

WALTER TELLMAN OF KNIK.
In the village I'm from we are pretty inexperienced. Most of our board members became board members when they were young, 18 years old. Very few of us graduated from high school and we didn't know what corporations were about. And no older people who probably had the knowledge to know how life should have been lived and what was good for us didn't understand the corporations, they didn't hardly understand English. So, they kind of were out of the picture. A lot of times I know, I make mistakes. I'm young, I just feel like a little kid. Yet all this responsibility is placed on us to run these corporations and it's too soon.

There was a misconception of what it took to survive in corporate America. (GORDON PULLAR OF KODIAK). It was somehow expected that Native people could become proficient in the business world overnight. Individuals who had worked on the mechanics of the settlement moved directly into corporate management roles. While these people may have been accomplished politicians, that did not necessarily follow that they would excel as business managers. No one seemed to realize this at the time and the leaders had good intentions and worked hard. Those qualities as noble as they may be do not ensure survival in the American Business world.

THE CORPORATIONS MUST FOLLOW BUSINESS PROCEDURES UNDER STATE LAW. THEY ARE REQUIRED TO PURSUE PROFITS AND MAKE EQUAL DISTRIBUTIONS.

The corporate structure has been set up (WALTER JOHNSON OF ANCHORAGE) for a person to put whatever amount of wealth that he wishes to put into that corporation. But no, not the Alaska Native. The Alaska Native put everything: the land, the money, and according to the ANCSA, they put their birthright and everything else into that corporate structure that we hate so much. We never had the choice of how much land, how much money, how much anything. We never had that right, yet the corporate structure is supposed to have been set up under those conditions.

BOTH CONGRESSIONAL AND NATIVE LEADERS WHO WROTE THE CLAIMS ACT FELT THE CORPORATE STRUCTURE OFFERED ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND POLITICAL CLOUT. THOSE FAVORING ANCSA CLAIM ENROLLMENT IN THE CORPORATIONS BROUGHT FAMILIES TOGETHER AND RENEWED NATIVE PRIDE. VILLAGE CORPORATIONS SUCH AS TANADGUSIX ON THE PRIBILOF ISLAND OF ST. PAUL, ARE WORKING TO MAINTAIN CULTURAL INTEGRITY.

TANADGUSIX PRESIDENT LARRY MERCULIEFF.
The corporation tries to use cultural mechanisms of group competition rather than individual competition in its operations. Decisions at the management level uses extensively the traditional Aleut methodology of decision making, which is consensus and conflict avoidance. In planning the port commercial development, the corporation is working with the city and the I.R.A. to develop plans on development control, local hire, training, and other such important concerns, with a specific goal that all three share minimizing negative development impacts and maximizing local participation with maximum control of culture and lifestyle. None of these things would have been possible without the corporate model established under ANCSA and/or the seed capital and land control it provided us.

BUT MERCULIEFF QUESTIONS THE WISDOM OF CORPORATE CONTROL OVER ANCESTRAL LAND ...I believe that a corporate structure under state law is a necessary element to attract outside development, but it is the wrong vehicle for protection of culturally valuable lands, because of they vulnerabilities and their profit-centered mandate. Village corporations must divest themselves of carefully identified, culturally valuable lands and hold onto lands suitable for economic development unless the shareholders decide otherwise.

BYRON MALLOT AGREES. HE IS PRESIDENT OF THE LARGE SEALASKA REGIONAL CORPORATION.
Anybody without economic freedom, does not have a choice really, if they are asked to make an economic decision. And I think that's very much the case with Alaska Native people. That is, if the only way we can realize personal economic gain is to sell your stock with the value that it has attached to that, not just from the operations of the corporation but the value that is attached to the land in the institution, is a very grave problem for the future of ANCSA.

ACCORDING TO MALLOT, A MAJORITY OF SEALASKA SHAREHOLDERS WANT TO SEPARATE LANDS FROM THE CORPORATION, LANDS THAT WILL NOT BE USED FOR DEVELOPMENT. BUT MALLOT ISN'T SURE I-R-A GOVERNMENTS SHOULD CONTROL THE LAND EITHER.
I.R.A. issue, I guess what it boils down to for me is that I don't want to exchange one set of problems for another. There may be instances in which it makes eminent sense in one area or one region, or one community, but it might not be meaningful in some other set of circumstances.

TERRY BURR, OF KETCHIKAN SEES A CONTINUING STRUGGLE BETWEEN NATIVE CULTURAL VALUES AND THE PROFIT MOTIVES OF THE CORPORATIONS. HER TESTIMONY TO THE ALASKA NATIVE REVIEW COMMISION IS READ BY ELIZABETH ENDERUD.
I've driven and flown past a lot of clear cuts on the island. The sight to me is depressing. It is ironic that Native Corporations are responsible for these clear cuts. I see a tree and a dollar bill on opposite ends of the scale with the Native corporation jumping on the dollar side making the tree go flying. I hope when my children are my age and someone asks them what's Sealaska, they don't say or think profits or dividends...that leaves a sour feeling in my guts. I hope our survival as a people in the future doesn't depend on whether or not the Japanese are going to build houses. I hope in the future our Native leaders aren't going to be suffering from ulcers caused by worrying about the price of fish and the well-being of the timber market.

I would like to emphasize that we are not against growth and development. We need it for our own people. Our people, our population base is growing and its developing. We just want a share in the benefits. (SHELDON KATCHATAG). And another thing I think we have a right to do, in addition to initiating, controlling, regulating, and sharing in the benefits of growth and development, is that we would minimize the impact of growth and development on our culture, on our people, on our heritage. Is that too much to ask?

SOME SHAREHOLDERS FEEL THEY HAVE LITTLE INFLUENCE CORPORATE DECISIONS. NORMALLY, MANAGEMENT HAS ITS OWN WAY, AND OTHER ISSUES ARE DECIDED BY PROXY--A FAR CRY FROM A DEMOCRATIC PROCESS. WHILE PEOPLE WANT MORE INPUT INTO CORPORATE DECISIONS, THEY DON'T WANT TO BE SADDLED WITH MORE LAYERS OF BUREAUCRACY. IN SMALL COMMUNITIES A FEW PEOPLE MAY BE OBLIGED TO FILL MANY LEADERSHIP ROLES.

ROLAND SHANKS IS LAND MANAGER OF EKLUTNA CORPORATION.
A typical small village out in the bush has very few economic opportunities and if somebody is being civic minded enough to sit on the school board, and maybe be on the city council and often be on the board of directors of his corporation, that person-there is just not enough time left to hold down an economic position that allows that person to essentially stay alive and meet the bills. So we have a problem, I see, that we are essentially asking people to fill a role that leaves them no time for the other roles that they have filled in the past.

The corporation appears to be operating much as any federal bureaucracy, in that all earnings are spent for salaries and expenses of the board of directors and the management level of our corporations and their subsidiaries. (JOHN DALTON OF SEATTLE). There are multiple layers of boards and policy makers, whose policies are apparently ineffective. This being the case, ANCSA has accomplished a changeover from the white man's bureaucracy to brown bureaucrats.

SOME VILLAGES HAVE REDUCED THE BUREAUCRACY BY DISSOLVING THEIR CORPORATIONS. THE UPPER YUKON COMMUNITIES OF VENETIE, ARCTIC VILLAGE, FISH CAMP AND CHRISTIAN VILLAGE HELD ELECTIONS AND DECIDED TO RETAIN THEIR LANDS BY HANDING ALL CORPORATION SHARES OVER TO THE TRIBAL GOVERNMENT.

VENETIE CHIEF GIDEON JAMES SAYS HE CAN'T SEE ROOM FOR TWO DIFFERENT LAWS ON THE SAME LAND.
I just feel, when along with Alaska Native Land Claim Bill, while having tribal form of government, I don't think it seems right to have another law shoved upon us while the IRA form of government is still in existence. So the land was given back to the people, but when the title was prepared, it was given to two corporations, and remember, Land Claims Act never wiped out the IRA organizations, so we decided to dissolve both corporations.

ON KODIAK ISLAND, THE VILLAGE CORPORATION WAS OVERWHELMED BY LEGAL REQUIREMENTS DESIGNED FOR LARGE CITIES. JACK WICK EXPLAINS.
The type of organization that was necessary to keep it running, we couldn't sustain one here. About three or four years after it was formed, we couldn't keep a board member, we had to drag people to try to get a annual meeting together to establish a legal quorum that was required. Tribal business doesn't have that requirement. They go about their business, no matter how many people are there, they get the job done. I think the last annual meeting we made the quorum by one person, and we had to drag him all the way from the other side of the bay. So that resulted in the board of directors deciding we have to do something. We'd invested some money, we couldn't control it. So the end result, regardless of what the stakes were made, is that Larson Bay does not have a corporation at this time, we're merged with the region.

BESIDES FUEL STATIONS AND GROCERY STORES, THE CORPORATIONS HAVE FEW OPPORTUNITIES TO PURSUE PROFIT IN RURAL ALASKA. ACCORDING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR'S 1985 STUDY ABOUT THE SUCCESS OF ANCSA, ONLY 5 OR 6 VILLAGE CORPORATIONS OUT OF 200 COULD HAVE BEEN EXPECTED TO SUCCEED. EVEN THOSE REGIONAL CORPORATIONS ABLE TO MAKE A PROFIT EMPLOY FEW ALASKA NATIVES. WITHOUT CHANGES TO ANCSA, THE LAND CAN BE LOST THRU CORPORATE TAKEOVER, TAXATION, AND BANKRUPTCY. THAT IS WHY MANY PEOPLE FEEL COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT MUST BE SEPARATED FROM CONTROL OF THE LAND.

We prevailed, and were able to gain title, the confirmation of title, to 44 million acres. (JOHN BORBRIDGE). Now it may be that the next step is something none of us can foresee. But in terms of looking at the timeless quality of tribes which continue forever and membership which changes, but who are members of something that continues without end, a tribe. Then it appears that the next logical consideration, is to combine the timeless quality of the tribe with the land, resulting in the tribe that is land based.

Profit making corporations, ANCSA corporations, do not speak as tribes. (FRED PAUL). They speak as General Motors speaks, or Ford Corporation, or some profit-making corporation. It doesn't have the power of public opinion. You know, we're not merely addressing the people of the state of Alaska when we speak as tribes. We're speaking to the Conscience of the United States.

Native people are different. (ELEANOR MC MULLEN OF PORT GRAHAM). Maybe I'm thinking we're different when we really aren't, but, I think our thinking is totally different. People that are non-Native don't quite understand our way of thinking and, somehow, if we could close those gaps so they can better understand us, and we better understand them, I think many good things can happen.

An Aleut story comes to mind at this point. (LARRY MERCULIEFF). There was a two hundred year old man named Koyux. Koyux lived in a band which became a village, which became a city. Before his leaders were Elders in the councils, and now they are IRA presidents, city mayors, and corporate presidents. Before land was used for communal benefit, owned by no one, and now it is in lots and blocks owned by individuals. Before his home was made of the free earth, with energy from the earth, and now he must make money to keep the house habitable, and apply under some law or with some expense for the land to build a home. Before all his food came from hunting, fishing, and gathering, and now some or most of it comes in wrappers filled with chemicals which he must buy. A little boy asked Koyux what he must do to control his future, and Koyux replied; this world is not of our peoples making, but it is not too late. White man's words have as many meanings as there are seals in the world's oceans. Study it, and choose the road you wish to take or it will never be of your own making. Do not reject the other worlds, take the best from it and mold it into yours, and above all do not follow your mind, let your mind follow your heart. Your heart contains your peoples spirit and courage of generations. Your mind is what you learn today. Do not give up for with every problem there is a solution.

WHILE CORPORATIONS AND TRIBAL GOVERNMENTS FIND WAYS TO CO-EXIST, THE REMAINING ANCSA LANDS ARE STILL AT RISK AS LONG AS THE LAW REMAINS UNCHANGED. IN AN UPCOMING PROGRAM WE LOOK AT OPTIONS TO SAVE THE LAND AND WHO WILL MAKE THE DECISIONS. FOR HOLDING OUR GROUND, THIS IS ADELINE RABOFF.

THIS PROGRAM WAS PRODUCED BY JIM SYKES, WRITTEN BY JIM SYKES AND ALEXA DVORSON, EDITED AND RESEARCHED BY SUE BURRUS. MARY KANCEWICK IS OUR SCRIPT CONSULTANT. SPECIAL THANKS TO THE COMMUNITY OF GAMBELL FOR SINGING, DANCING, AND DRUMMING, AND ALSO TO THE INUIT CIRCUMPOLAR CONFERENCE. "HOLDING OUR GROUND" IS A PRODUCTION OF WESTERN MEDIA CONCEPTS WHICH IS SOLELY RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CONTENT.

FUNDING FOR "HOLDING OUR GROUND" IS PROVIDED BY THE ALASKA HUMANITIES FORUM, THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE HUMANITIES, RURAL ALASKA COMMUNITY ACTION PROGRAM, THE NORTH SLOPE BOROUGH, AND ZIONTZ-PIRTLE LAW FIRM.

[Western Media Concepts no longer exists. Please Contact TapeAlaska, PO Box 696, Palmer, AK 99645 for information about Holding Our Ground.]

 

PROGRAM SUMMARIES:

1. The People, the Land, and the Law
Comprehensive 30-minute survey of the burning issues facing Alaska's Native community in the second half of this decade. This tour over the vast landscape of Alaska Native affairs serves as an overview of the topics to be treated in depth during the other 14 segments.

2. The Land and Sea
The ages-old Native feeling about the land comes across the airwaves like a fresh breeze. Two starkly different realities are presented—the Native concept of oneness with the land and the Western notion of land ownership and development. How do these contrasting philosophies fit the Native in rural Alaska?

3. Subsistence—A Way of Life
Far from the political and legal controversies surrounding subsistence, Natives carry on their traditional subsistence lifestyles. Hear their very personal descriptions of subsistence, what it is, and what it means to them. An important aspect of this documentary will be to delve into the mix of subsistence and cash economies.

4. Sovereignty—What it Means to People
Self-determination is the heart of a rising grassroots political movement. The listener will learn that this quest by Native people to control their own futures reaches far into the past. And the listener will discover that American political theory is not as much at odds with the sovereignty movement as one might think.

5. Traditional Councils and Corporate Boardrooms
Who calls the shots in the Native community: A look at power, history, and decision making. The audience will consider change from the perspectives of traditional village rule to government and corporate bureaucracies.

6. The Land and the Corporations
Traditional Native lands became corporate assets because the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act created profit-making Native corporations to hold the land. This segment will look at one of the toughest questions facing the Native community today: "Do these Native corporations have an obligation to develop their lands to earn a profit for their shareholders, or do they have an obligation to preserve those lands for subsistence and for generations to come?"

7. Risking and Saving the Land
Land owned by Native corporations can be lost through sales, corporate takeover, bankruptcy, or taxation. This has generated so much concern among Natives trying to save their land that there are now a number of options to prevent loss of these lands. This program is an exploration of the major risks and what alternatives are available.

8 Subsistence and the Law
Carrying on the subsistence lifestyle without interference from the law is a thing of the past. Traditional ways of hunting fishing, and gathering are now subject to political and legal changes and challenges in what may well be Alaska's most bitter controversy. Hear discussion of the new role of Alaska Natives as treaty-makers and game managers.

9. Sovereignty - How it Works in Real Life
Local government control is a reality in some areas of Native Alaska. In other areas Natives are working to implement their own unique forms of self- government. Some have found self-determination in traditional government. Take a close look at the communities where sovereignty is becoming a reality.

10. The Newborns—Left Out of ANCSA
When the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act. passed on December 18, 1971, all those yet to be born were left out. Now thousands of teenagers and toddlers alike are on the outside of ANCSA looking in. The Native community is divided into ANCSA shareholders and newborns, and the problems could get worse. Natives young and old speak out in eloquent terms.

11. From Hunter, Fisher, Gatherer to Corporate Director
The corporation idea—how and why it was chosen as a vehicle for land claims. Was this a good way to give Alaska Natives a piece of the American dream, or was it a way of assimilating them? This program examines how Natives have made the transition from traditional life to corporate director or shareholder

12. Changing the Claims Act—The Key Players
Nearly every Native organization in the state is jumping on the "Let's do something about ANCSA" idea. What began as grassroots dissatisfaction with the act has now shifted into a well-organized movement. There is the Inuit Circumpolar Conference, the United Tribes of Alaska, the Alaska Federation of Natives, and Association of Village Council Presidents, and others.

13. Recommendations of the Alaska Native Review Commission
An historic journey by Canadian Judge Thomas R. Berger has culminated in some provocative recommendations about the options open to Alaska's Natives. Listeners will hear a cross-section of views about what Berger reported and how this may affect changes in the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

14. Other Settlements with Indigenous Peoples Settlement Act
The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act inspired other indigenous peoples in the world to seek land claims in the settlements with their countries. This program will look at those efforts in Canada, Greenland, Australia, Norway, and elsewhere. Now some of the land claims proposals of others are being studied by Alaskans seeking to improve ANCSA.

15. The Dream versus the Reality
The final segment considers what people wanted all along in land claims and what they got. Should all the hard work of the past be scrapped? How has the dream changed? Voices of many people speak of the future, what they want and how they will go about getting it for themselves and their Children.

16. Special Program--Berger's Recommendations

 

 

Go to University of AlaskaThe University of Alaska Fairbanks is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution and is a part of the University of Alaska system.

 


Alaska Native Knowledge Network
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 756730
Fairbanks  AK 99775-6730
Phone (907) 474.1902
Fax (907) 474.1957
Questions or comments?
Contact
ANKN
Last modified February 7, 2007