A History of Racism and Prejudice: The Untold Story of the Northern Paiute The Portrayal of the Past in the Present
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Throughout history, the Northern Paiute people have continuously been subjected to both racism and prejudice. This prejudice came from both the arrival of Euro-American colonizers and other Native American tribes in the area. Since the 19th century, the dominant portrayal of the Paiute people has remained unchanged. From primary documents such as letters, to the work of early historians such as Bancroft, to recent accounts from modern authors, a negative image of the Northern Paiute has been passed down. Modern authors and historians use the same language as the early settlers, and call the Paiutes the “Snake Indians”, a derogatory term that is both insulting and unacceptable to the tribe. This unfair portrait of the Paiute people must be changed, and modern historians and authors may be unintentionally reporting a biased history.