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Defend the Sacred

Native American Religious Freedom beyond the First Amendment

Michael D. McNally

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Geisteswissenschaften, Kunst, Musik / Pädagogik


The remarkable story of the innovative legal strategies Native Americans have used to protect their religious rights

From North Dakota's Standing Rock encampments to Arizona's San Francisco Peaks, Native Americans have repeatedly asserted legal rights to religious freedom to protect their sacred places, practices, objects, knowledge, and ancestral remains. But these claims have met with little success in court because Native American communal traditions don't fit easily into modern Western definitions of religion. In Defend the Sacred, Michael McNally explores how, in response to this situation, Native peoples have creatively turned to other legal means to safeguard what matters to them.

To articulate their claims, Native peoples have resourcefully used the languages of cultural resources under environmental and historic preservation law; of sovereignty under treaty-based federal Indian law; and, increasingly, of Indigenous rights under international human rights law. Along the way, Native nations still draw on the rhetorical power of religious freedom to gain legislative and regulatory successes beyond the First Amendment.

The story of Native American advocates and their struggle to protect their liberties, Defend the Sacred casts new light on discussions of religious freedom, cultural resource management, and the vitality of Indigenous religions today.

Weitere Titel von diesem Autor
Michael D. McNally
Michael D. McNally
Michael D. McNally



Repatriation (humans), Anishinaabe, Court order, Establishment Clause, Federal agency (Germany), First Amendment to the United States Constitution, Treaty, Controversy, Indian Territory, Legislation, Sherbert v. Verner, Civil disobedience, Spirituality, Indigenous rights, Traditional knowledge, Vine Deloria Jr., Legislative history, Attempt, Indian people, V., Protestantism, Prison, United States, Federal judge, Strict scrutiny, Worcester v. Georgia, Ghost Dance, Crime, Criminalization, Racism, Jurisprudence, Appellate court, Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, Law of India, Slavery, Proclamation, Antiquities Act, Consideration, Colonization, Historic preservation, Peyote, International human rights law, Free Exercise Clause, Indian country, Tribal sovereignty in the United States, Medicine bundle, Desecration, Presumption, Precedent, Native American Rights Fund, Suzan Shown Harjo, Tribalism, Native American Church, Statute, Chaplain, Good faith, Supreme Court of the United States, Employment Division v. Smith, National Congress of American Indians, Lone Wolf v. Hitchcock, Ojibwe, Religious Freedom Restoration Act, Equal Protection Clause, Narrative, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Criticism, Piety, Politics, Rights, Jurisdiction, Directive (European Union), Navajo Nation, Plaintiff, Freedom of religion, Indigenous peoples, Regulation, Environmental law, Indian Claims Commission, Amendment, Johnson v. M'Intosh, Lifeway, Prison religion, Injunction, Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, Treaty rights, Ambiguity (law), American Indian Religious Freedom Act, Native American religion, International law, Doctrine, Sweat lodge, Rehnquist Court, Religion, Native Americans in the United States, Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Burial, Law of the United States, Custom (law), Bear Butte, Recommendation (European Union)