Native American Heritage Month Begins Oct. 17

enc05_dancing_earth_jp_Lg.jpgSonoma State University celebrates Native American Heritage Month with several outstanding events beginning this week and into November. The festivities start with a performance from Dancing Earth, a group passionately committed to indigenous contemporary dance. They have been named by Dance Magazine as "One of the Top 25 to Watch."

Native American Heritage Month begins Oct. 17. Events for the month include:

Dancing Earth - Thursday, Oct. 17, 8 p.m. Ives 101 - Dancing Earth spins, stomps and spirals into life on the world's dancing grounds as a collective of intertribal Indigenous dance artists, under the leadership of internationally respected choreographer Rulan Tangen. Rooted in the spirit and energy of the first peoples and the land, the mythic power of Dancing Earth's creations respect, embrace and expand the context of Indigenous culture into vital contemporary relevance. They believe in dance as an expression that can illuminate issues of cultural, historical, philosophical, mythic, and spiritual relevance. Co-sponsored by The HUB.

Cornerstone Farm: Restoring Social and Ecological Health to the Indigenous Rumsen Ohlone Tribe, - Wednesday, Nov. 6, 5 p.m., The HUB. In partnership with Indigenous Rumsen Ohlone Tribe, Cornerstone Farm is demonstrating how to build a regenerative agriculture as a way of restoring ecological and social balance. They are working with Chief Tony Cerda in a way to create a space for the Ohlone tribe and future generations to come home and continue to deepen their relationship as the original people of their land. For information contact

Benson.jpeg"To Walk in Harmony: Native American Lifeways In Sonoma County." Dr. Ben Benson, Wednesday Nov. 6, 7 p.m., Darwin 102 - Ben Benson is a popular professor at Santa Rosa Junior College. He has been featured on a TED talk for his lectures about Native American life and culture in Sonoma County. His presentations include local Native art, especially local basketry that is so rich in meaning and environmental philosophy.

Andrew Jolivette, Wednesday, Nov. 13, noon, Stevenson 1002, (Africana Lecture Series) and 5 p.m., The HUB, Student Center - Andrew Jolivette (Opelousa/Atakapa-Ishak) Ph.D. is an accomplished educator, writer, speaker, and social/cultural critic. His work spans many different social and political arenas - from education reform and cultural representation in Native America to community of color identity issues, critical mixed-race movement building, LGBT/Queer community of color identity issues and gay marriage, and AIDS disparities within Indigenous and people of color communities. Jolivette is associate professor and department chair in American Indian Studies at San Francisco State University. Sponsored by The HUB and American Multi-Cultural Studies.

MV5BMjEzMTk0NTk2MV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMTY1ODc1Mg@@._V1_SY317_CR15,0,214,317_.jpg"Two Spirits" film showing Thursday Nov. 14, Ives 101, 7 p.m. - "Two Spirits" interweaves the tragic story of a mother's loss of her son. Fred Martinez was a male-bodied person with a feminine nature, a special gift according to his ancient Navajo culture. But the place where two discriminations meet is a dangerous place to live, and Fred became one of the youngest hate-crime victims in modern history when he was brutally murdered at sixteen. Between tradition and controversy, sex and spirit, and freedom and fear, lives the truth--the bravest choice you can make is to be yourself.

ABOVE, Dancing Earth stages Indigenous contemporary dance performances.

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