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Geisteswissenschaften, Kunst, Musik / Geschichte
By 2009, reverberations of economic crisis spread from the United States around the globe. As corporations across the United States folded, however, small businesses on the Qualla Boundary of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) continued to thrive. In this rich ethnographic study, Courtney Lewis reveals the critical roles small businesses such as these play for Indigenous nations. The EBCI has an especially long history of incorporated, citizen-owned businesses located on their lands. When many people think of Indigenous-owned businesses, they stop with prominent casino gaming operations or natural-resource intensive enterprises. But on the Qualla Boundary today, Indigenous entrepreneurship and economic independence extends to art galleries, restaurants, a bookstore, a funeral parlor, and more.
Lewis's fieldwork followed these businesses through the Great Recession, and against the backdrop of a rapidly expanding EBCI-owned casino. Lewis's keen observations reveal how Eastern Band small business owners have contributed to an economic sovereignty that empowers and sustains their nation both culturally and politically.
North Carolina, Native Nation financial support for entrepreneurs, American Indian work, Native Nation sovereignty, Small business diversity, Tribal finance, Borders of sovereignty, The Great Recession, Practices and constructions of nationhood, Tribal Enterprises, Native Nation self-determination, Small business educational efforts, Harrah's Cherokee Casino, Small business support programs, American Indian small business owners, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians artists, Native Nation citizenship, American Indian representations in media, American Indian access to collateral, American Indian labor, Economic Stability for Native Nation economies, Indigenous political autonomy movements, Economic leakage, Economic development on reservations, Economic sustainability for reservations, Cherokee practices of small business ownership, Democratic Socialism, Economic sovereignty, Family-owned businesses on reservations, American Indian Gaming, Cherokee small business owners, Buy local and tourism, Rich Indians, Cherokee, Cherokee entrepreneurship, Tourism on reservations, American Indian self-authored representations, One-industry economic precarity, American Indian Activism, Cherokee cultural reclamation, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Indigenous entrepreneurship, Anti-colonial entrepreneurship, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians government, Indigenous tourism sustainability, American Indian authenticity constructions