Warning: Native Humor! 5 New Videos by the 1491s
Native pranksters the 1491s have fought the myth that American Indians are humorless with their "Smiling Indians" video. They've exposed the racist nature of sports mascots by confronting Utah Utes fans. With their "Represent" series they've spotlighted Native college students who are holding on to their culture while attending some of Turtle Island's most prestigious schools. And on Valentine's Day, they taught us to say "I love you" in about 70 Native languages.
All worthwhile videos, but let's not lose sight of the fact that the 1491s (Ryan Red Corn, Sterlin Harjo, Dallas Goldtooth, Bobby Wilson, and Migizi Pensoneau) are a sketch comedy troupe above all, and the clips they've made about the absurdities of the contemporary Native experience are funny as well as insightful. But mostly funny. This is what they do best.
All the 1491s' videos are viewable at the group's YouTube channel; we're bringing you five of the latest (the oldest dates from December 23). This first one addresses the commercialization of American Indian cuture -- the cause for much hand-wringing in Indian country for a long time. What counts as sharing the culture, and what's profiteering? And can one Indian really begrudge another for trying to make a living in this compassionless capitalist system -- hey, everyone's gotta eat. "The Indian Store" is a look at a shop that sells Indian stuff, exotic and cute as the customers want it to be, and by any means necessary.
A frisbee-sized dreamcatcher that will boost your wifi signal? How ridiculous!
We'll take three of them -- do you guys gift wrap?
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