Native American Dance

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Native American Dance

Thesis: Dance is important in the lives of Native American people. There is a large spiritual connection involved with Native American Dance. Dances are performed for many reasons, and there are a wide variety of styles.


I.Why Do Native Americans Dance


A. Powwow Facts

III.History of Native American Dance

A. European Settlers

B. Missionaries and U.S Government

C. Pueblo Indian Revolt

IV.Types of Dances

A. Eskimo

B. Eastern

1. Northeast

2. Southeast

C. Plains

D. Southwest

1. Pueblo

2. Apache

3. Navajo

4. Yaqui

E. Northwest

V. Dress

A. Men

1. Men's Northern Traditional

2. Grass Dance

3. Men's Southern Traditional

B. Woman

1. Lady's Cloth

2. Lady's Buckskin

3. Lady's Jingle Dress

VI. Religion In Dance

A. Sky Father

B. Spirits

VII. Conclusion

Dance is an important part in the culture of the Native American people. "Native American Dance is a very special art.

Many dances are performed for family events, such as weddings and birthdays. Some dances are performed for fun, others to help the harvest, and some for religious ceremonies" (Pearson Education). The dances have been passed down through the generations, and are still practiced today.

"Indian music and dance occur everywhere in North America" (Champagne 701). Indian music and dance are often performed at powwows. The word powwow comes from the Algonquian word pawaugs, which deals with shamans and their curing ceremonies. The twentieth century powwow is known as a "secular event featuring group singing and social dancing by men, woman, and children" (Hoxie 513). Powwows are generally community social events, and all people can take part. The modern powwow came from the ceremonies of the Plains and Prairie tribes. Some variations are based on regional history, program format, dance and song style, and costuming. Powwows can range in size from...