ANT 324L • Native Americans in Texas
9:30 AM-11:00 AM
The course is designed to 1) familiarize students with the earliest narratives written by the European explorers that entered Texas, 2) develop skills and strategies to read and analyze these documents, 3) extract environmental and cultural information from the records and 4) engage in discussions of the evidence for Native American cultural behavior, resource utilization, conflict, disease, and related topics. The course uses concepts and evidence from Anthropology, History, Archaeology, Historical Geography and Native American Studies, and it is structured to provide information to students interested in those disciplines. We will 1) examine the concepts of prehistory, history, and ethnohistory and how these concepts apply to the area known today as Texas, 2) review the archaeological and historical records and the evidence these records provide about Native American lifeways and 3) analyze how early historians dealt with the Native Americans. It is expected that the student will become familiar and acquire skills to utilize the library and archival resources of the Center for American History and the Nettie Lee Benson Library. The class will read extracts from the expedition reports of Cabeza de Vaca, Coronado, De Soto, Bosque-Larios, Mendoza-Lopez and La Salle. In the latter part of the course we shall focus on the Spanish Mission-Presidio Period, the Apache, the Comanche and the onset of European and Anglo settlement movements in the 1800s. The course will conclude by examining the situation of Native American groups in Texas in the 19th and 20th centuries.