April 2020

American indian Studies Center Monthly Newsletter

Please donate to the American Indian Studies Center

Please consider donating to the UCLA American Indian Studies Center to support students, research, and programming.

Dear AISC Friends and Family,

I hope that you are all safe and well in this extraordinary context. As we continue to be safer at home, the AISC remains closed, but we are working remotely to manage the crisis, maintain as many of our services as possible, as well as to plan for the future. There is, of course, much uncertainty about the future, but we can be certain that there will be a post-coronavirus world eventually. We are using this time to reflect on what is most important to our community and make changes to best align our work with those values. We hope to see you all again in person very soon.

Students, if you are experiencing extreme hardship due to the pandemic, we want to hear from you and we want to help. Please reach out at:

Chinchokma’ni pobanna/We wish you good health.

Shannon Speed,
Director, UCLA American Indian Studies Center


For up to date information on the COVID-19 outbreak, please access:

UCLA acknowledges the Tongva People

AISC at UCLA acknowledges the Tongva peoples as the traditional land caretakers of Tovaangar (Los Angeles basin, So. Channel Islands) and are grateful to have the opportunity to work for the Taraaxatom (indigenous peoples) in this place. As a land grant institution, we pay our respects to Honuukvetam (Ancestors), 'Ahiihirom (Elders), and 'Eyoohiinkem (our relatives/ relations) past, present and emerging.


April 2020 Newsletter


Due to the COVID-19 epidemic, events for spring quarter have been canceled, including and not limited to Hammer Forum: Indigenous Women in US Detention, Hammer Museum, the UCLA 35th Annual Pow-Wow at Wallis Annenberg Stadium and the UCLA Alumni celebration.


In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the American Indian Studies Center (AISC), we are highlighting our alumni in a monthly Native Bruins: Past, Present & Emerging feature. You can read about our illustrious alums on our website and social media pages (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). This month, we are highlighting Native Bruin EUGENE HERROD.


Eugene Herrod (Muscogee Creek) is a UCLA Native graduate who earned a BA in Anthropology in 1977 and currently teaches at College of the Muscogee Nation. He teaches Native students about land issues, gaming law, and Muscogee and Native American history and culture. Eugene was born and raised in Oklahoma and received his education through the Bureau of Indian Affairs school programs, after which he moved to Los Angeles as part of the US Indian Relocation program. There, he later enrolled at UCLA.

During the early 1970s Native people nationwide were rising up against oppressive government practices when they occupied Alcatraz and Wounded Knee. Inspired by his early exposure to these forms of activism, Eugene started organizing other Natives in Southern California. As a leader protesting the use of Indian mascots in California public schools, he and a few Native students at UCLA advocated for legislation that would remove “Redskins” as a mascot within public schools. He also worked with advocates for American Indian children on filing a legal complaint against the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to eliminate personalized license plates that read “Redskins.” After graduating, Eugene served as a private investigator for 27 years, which not only included addressing Indian injustices, but also working on the MGM fire, the OJ Simpson case, and the tobacco cases during the 1980s. After retiring, Eugene moved to Oklahoma where he is currently teaching at his tribal institution, College of the Muscogee Nation. Eugene also holds a master’s degree in sociology from Fort Hays State University, and a master’s of jurisprudence in Indian law from Tulsa Law school.



The American Indian Studies Center Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary.

The UCLA American Indian Studies Center (AISC) was founded in 1969 as a research institute dedicated to addressing American Indian issues and supporting Native communities. The AISC serves as a hub of activities for Indigenous students, staff, faculty, alumni, and community, as well as serving as a bridge between the academy and indigenous peoples locally, nationally, and internationally. We foster innovative academic research by students and faculty, publish leading scholarship in the field of American Indian Studies, and support events and programming focused on Indigenous issues.




We want to assure you that the editorial staff of the American Indian Culture an Research Journal are continuing to work remotely through UCLA’s temporary office closures. Please continue to submit articles to Editor-in-Chief Randall Akee at However, because we are working from home during this time, we will temporarily be unable to fulfill book orders until further notice. Please do not hesitate to contact Pamela Grieman with any publications-related concerns at And please stay safe and healthy!

Keep an eye out for the next issue of the American Indian Culture and Research Journal on “Rethinking Blackness and Indigeneity in the Light of Settler Colonial Theory.” Guest-edited by Circe Sturm, this special issue explores the intersections of Blackness and Indigeneity from two primary analytic and theoretical frames, critical race theory and settler colonialism (vol. 43, no. 2).

American Indian Studies Center Publications

The Center's publications unit operates as a small independent press, one of the few that prizes Native voices in works of creative writing, community handbooks, and academic publications. Our flagship publication is the American Indian Culture and Research Journal (AICRJ), which has been recognized as one of the leading serial publications on Native American life and issues. In addition to publishing works on contemporary and historical American Indian issues, law, and politics, the press publishes books of plays, poetry, and fiction.




Due to precautions being taken regarding the COVID-19 (Corona Virus) on campus and throughout the city and state to “Stay Safe at Home,” the AISC Library has suspended in person visits until further notice. Please contact the librarian, Joy Holland, via e-mail: to discuss basic reference and research questions or pre-arrange a video/ Zoom conference. Support to find digital resources, articles, online archives, and e-books in American Indian Studies and on Indigenous subject matter will be provided through instructional sessions, videos, and research guides planned to be provided throughout the term. We will get through this together!


Come “drop-in” and set up a personal reference appointment with the librarian, ask a basic question, or just chat about your concerns or for information/support needs for the term. The librarian is here to support you. The first drop-in Zoom Session with the AISC Librarian is planned for Friday. April 10, 2020 during the lunch hour. Drop in anytime from 12:00 -1:30 PM. You will need Zoom downloaded or web access to Zoom through the following link:

Password: 477174

Recent book acquisitions for the AISC library.

This term we will be adding lots of e-books too!


UCLA Library has put together a webinar series aimed at helping students adjust to remote learning and address their concerns about the transition. The webinar sessions will be recorded on Zoom, and simulcast on the UCLA Library Facebook page.

Initial topics covered include:

  • Developing study routines
  • Finding course resources
  • Helpful markup applications
  • Making connections with peers and professors
  • Reading effectively


Many publishers are making their university press collections at least partially available during this time when access to physical libraries is limited. Presses like University of New Mexico Press, University of Arizona Press, University of Hawaii Press and several others are known for their American Indian Studies and Indigenous subject matter. Instead of browsing at the book store with your latte in hand, enjoy a cup of home-brewed coffee and browse through this list of publishers and their collections available now on (Project Muse), one of many databases opening up some digital collections to the PUBLIC (not just to the campus community).


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