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Indian policy as an emergent property of the American policy making process

Authors
Journal
The Social Science Journal
0362-3319
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
44
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.soscij.2007.03.016
Disciplines
  • Political Science

Abstract

Abstract This paper argues that we can improve our understanding of American Indian policy if we think about it as an emergent behavior of the American policy making process. It is what the political system does and does not do that relates to Native nations. From a perspective guided by complexity theory, Indian policy appears to be about assimilating Indian land and natural resources and not about assimilating Indians into the larger American society. After suggesting that the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988 is only the most recent in a long history of assimilation policies to emerge from the American political system, this article concludes that Indian gaming revenues brighten, and paradoxically, threaten the future of American Indian tribes.

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