Re: Help with "Native American" terminology

Have you contacted the game author, Nick Proctor? He is a knowledgeable historian, and there is probably a reason he used that terminology in the game. Usually RTTP games try to be as accurate to the historical setting as they can. This can lead to some antiquated terms being used (but there are limits-- no actual slurs are allowed!), but usually the game book explains why that decision was made. Nick's email is

I have used that game, btw. It's a very good tool for teaching about that period!

Re: Help with "Native American" terminology

In my edition of The Dividing Line Histories of William Byrd II of Westover (Chapel Hill: UNC Press for the Omohundro Institute for Early American Culture and History, 2013) I used the term "Indians" in accordance with the "Guide for Writing About Virginia Indians and Virginia Indian History" issued by the Virginia Council of Indians in 2008. I am aware that a controversy exists concerning the terminology, but wherever possible I think it is appropriate to adopt the usage preferred by indigenous people themselves.

Re: Help with "Native American" terminology

Hi Vivian,

I would submit that it is far from a settled matter for a number of reasons. First and foremost, are the number of folks in this category who do not want to be called “Native American.” A large number of my Indian friends want to be called Indian. It is what they call themselves, it is what the law refers to them as, it is part of the name of the federal bureaucracy that provides services to tribes and reservations.

Re: Help with "Native American" terminology

It is my experience since becoming a historian in my second career that American Indians prefer to be called "American Indians" (after their tribal identification, of course). This comes from asking members, especially when I was a historian with the National Park Service and worked on many projects with tribal historians and other tribal members, as well as in my own research and writing, and the overwhelming response I received was "American Indian" was preferred almost to a man and woman.

Re: Help with "Native American" terminology


I wanted to respond since I’ve had almost the exact same conversation regarding my “Imagining American Indians in Film” course. First of all, stick to your guns, as the committee is, in perhaps overly-simplistic terms, incorrect. It is a terminology in flux.

With that it mind, here are some concrete ways to respond.

I start by framing the conversation around the right of groups to choose their own terminology. This is written into the inclusive language policy at my institution, so I make sure to point to that.

Help with "Native American" terminology

I recently submitted a proposal for a new course that I will teach in our first year seminar program in the fall.  It entails two Reacting to the Past games:  Forest Diplomacy, 1756-1757  and Greenwich Village1913: Suffrage, Labor, and the New Woman.  My question is about the former.  In the "official" description of the course, the author uses the word "Indian."   This is the comment I got from the committee that approved my course:  "The committee would like to note that Native America


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