Date of this Version
Borgmann, Jake. All These Things We've Done Before: A Brief History of Red-Power Inspired Projects, Programs, and Efforts at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and What They Can Do For Us Today. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. 2022.
The Red Power Movement from 1969-1975 inspired both Indigenous and non- Indigenous students and faculty from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) to work for the betterment of Indigenous peoples in areas of affirmation, education, leadership, and language preservation and revitalization. For a time, student efforts by the Council of American Indian Students, faculty sponsored Indigenous education-centered programs, educational outreach through television, and Lakota language courses helped carve out an Indigenous space on campus where Indigenous students could thrive and seek empowerment through education. This era of Red Power-inspired projects, programs, and efforts at UNL peaked from 1969 to the early 1980s, but stagnated by the mid-1980s.
Rooted in archival research, personal interviews, and Indigenous Studies methodologies, this thesis focuses on that era from 1969 to the early 1980s when UNL students and faculty pursued Indigenous-centered, culturally and politically affirming education projects and programs that channeled Red Power into meaningful campus representation, advocacy, and Indigenous empowerment. Today, as UNL administrators have announced efforts to reckon with systemic inequality, a return to Red Power-inspired projects, programs, and efforts can help the University achieve that goal of a more equitable university and support Indigenous futures.