Native American Videos

Native American videos have become a popular means of preserving and transmitting information about culture, as well as offering entertainment for native peoples by native peoples. Technological advances have made this option accessible and affordable to many, both in terms of those who create the material and those who enjoy it.

Similar to the way, years ago, that interested groups collected oral histories of experiences in the old south and during the Great Depression on tape, preserving this valuable cultural information for future generations, Native American videos become a wonderful tool in capturing the story telling traditions and oral histories of indigenous peoples. Traditional ceremonies and rituals preserved on video offer a great opportunity to see to it that future generations have access to such cultural information.

Being able to take control of the information process allows indigenous peoples to make Native American videos that are an authentic expression of their culture, rather than one filtered through the perspective of anthropologists and other researchers. Today, there are numerous types of Native American videos available, ranging from those that tell native stories to those that detail instructions for creating native hand crafts to documentaries.
Native American videos are a valuable teaching tool, both for those of native heritage and for those that are not. With the focus today on multi-cultural teaching, emphasizing knowledge of and respect for a wide variety of cultures, the availability of informative Native American videos created by Native Americans has been quite a step forward in promoting a better understanding of native history and culture in the general public.

Native American videos offer a wealth of knowledge to the viewer. The ease with which history, culture and other information can be preserved and made available to others via Native American videos is one of the many benefits of living in a technologically enhanced information age.

Joseph Paige 2006

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