Indians and Energy: Exploitation and Opportunity in the American Southwest

May 15th, 2012 | By | Category: 23-4: Investing in Education, Empowering Tribal Communities, Media Reviews

INDIANS AND ENERGYEdited by Sherry L. Smith and Brian Frehner
School for Advanced Research Press (2010)

Review by Dr. Bradley Shreve

Every year university presses collectively publish hundreds of history books. Many are intriguing and creative endeavors, but few books effectively reach beyond readers within the historical profession. Sherry Smith and Brian Frehner’s new edited volume on Native people and energy exploitation is one of those few. In collaboration with the School for Advanced Research in Santa Fe, the editors have brought together a diverse group of interdisciplinary scholars to uncover the complexities and contradictions of energy exploitation on tribal lands in the Southwest. The result is a collection of essays that is revealing, provocative, and, perhaps most significantly, important.

As the editors make clear in their introduction, the 11 essays in Indians and Energy reveal that there are no easy answers to the great opportunities and grave problems that energy exploitation presents for Native peoples. Smith and Frehner’s book is essential reading for anyone interested in the past, present, and future of natural resource exploitation and tribal sovereignty.

Dr. Bradley Shreve is chair of the Social and Behavioral Sciences Division at Diné College. He is author of Red Power Rising: The National Indian Youth Council and the Origins of Native Activism (University of Oklahoma Press, 2011).

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