The Indian Boarding Schools

Most Americans, though they may recognize – when they pause to give it a moment’s thought – that Europeans conquered the people native to this continent as part of the process of establishing the United States and other nations, and they might grudgingly concede, in their need to retain a fierce pride in their national identity, some element of the unfair about it all – the world is like that – have virtually no knowledge of the virulently racist dehumanization to which Native Americans were subjected, as a matter of governmental policy, for decades after the conquest was complete.

For one of the better summaries of the history of the Indian boarding schools and the various forms of abuse – cultural, physical, psychological, sexual – these shools carried out upon the young Indians removed to them, this article from Amnesty International’s Amnesty Now magazine offers this bracing account. It is, increasingly, a disturbing read, and no less so, amid the litany of crimes, for the nation’s turning away from any acknowledgment of this history.

This Native produced film is available from