This chapter addresses many issues involving Native peoples that are a result of the colonization of Indigenous peoples, the effects of a long history of governmental administration, and the manipulation of Native history and cultures in public spheres. Indigenous peoples in the United States today have lived through a long period of cultural collapse and are subject to extreme competition for land, rights, and resources. This chapter focuses primarily on the Indigenous peoples of Oregon within the United States. The issues faced by these people are similar to those faced by Indigenous peoples around the world, including a history of colonization, removal from traditional lands to reservations, signing away land and rights in treaties, and forced education in boarding schools. Disempowerment of tribal sovereignty, disenfranchisement from lands and resources, and forced assimilation have significantly affected Native peoples.
In addition, Indigenous peoples of the United States face significant problems adjusting to contemporary society. The general lack of education about Indigenous peoples has caused a lack of knowledge about Native history and culture in society. Within this culture, mascots and stereotypes are challenging to Native peoples, who face racism in society. Contemporary tribal nations struggle to restore cultures and governance systems. Native peoples must adjust to the cross-culturalism of modern society while they seek to maintain tribal identities and memberships in tribal nations. Scholarly studies of Native peoples are also addressed, as the studies and perceptions of anthropologists have significantly affected how tribes are perceived today.