The Clash of Stories at Chimney Rock: A Narrative Approach to Cultural Conflict Over Native American Sacred Sites on Public Land
Howard J. Vogel
Hamline University - School of Law
January 1, 2001
Santa Clara Law Review, Vol. 41, p. 757, 2001
This article begins with an explanation of how cultural conflict is in fact a problem of the law related to the protection of Native American sacred sites on public land. In these cases Native Americans must fight for the survival of their culture in the context of those sacred sites tied to their identity and spirituality. The author critically reexamines the Chimney Rock case, Lying v. Northwest Indian Cemetery Protective Association, the only one of the sacred site cases to the reach the United States Supreme Court. Throughout this article, it is argued that one needs to recognize these disputes as cultural conflicts between communities, arising from a clash between master stories, which inform the identity and understanding of the peoples who are the parties to these disputes, rather than simply as disputes involving conflict between individual rights and government powers. An alternative approach explored in handling these cases is the narrative approach. Listening to another’s story can help to better understand the situation and help to reach a well-informed conclusion.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 50
Keywords: Cultural conflict, Native American, American Indian, public land, sacred sites, Culture Wars, narrative approach
JEL Classification: Q15, K00, K11, K4Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: April 3, 2013
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