Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Department

Interdisciplinary Studies

First Advisor

Steven Silvern

Abstract

This thesis is an investigation into the link between settler-colonialism, capitalism, environmental degradation, and the corresponding modern conditions of the Navajo Nation and its people - the Dine. This thesis uses existing History, Geography, and Indigenous Studies academic scholarship, as well as new research to connect the processes of settler-colonialism and capitalism to Indigenous federal policies within the United States. The United States' settler-colonial political and economic systems have facilitated the destruction of Indigenous sovereignty and installation of extractive energy projects, such as uranium and coal on the Navajo Nation. These policies and industries have created a legacy of dire socio-economic conditions and damage to the land and culture of the Dine people residing in the Navajo Nation. However, this is not a narrative of defeat. Recently, The Navajo Nation's undertaking of multiple renewable energy proposals and projects points towards not only an energy transformation, but a revival of tribal sovereignty and Dine culture for the Dine of today and for generations to come.

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