Miss Navajo Nation Is A Symbol Of America

A colorful blending.

This is a wonderful interview with a Mixed Native American and African-American woman, who won the tile of “Miss Navajo Nation” recently. In it she talks about the shared history between the two cultures, which is surprising to many people.

Since the first arrival of enslaved Africans in North America, the relationships between African Americans and Native Americans have encompassed alliances and adversaries, as well as the indivisible blending of customs and culture.

“It’s not received a lot of attention because it’s not the dominant culture’s story, although it’s very important to the dominant culture’s bigger view of the past,” says James Nottage, curator of the exhibit, which includes narratives of enslaved blacks who traveled the Trail of Tears with their Native owners; slaves who intermarried into Native tribes as an escape from bondage; and the largely African-featured members of the Shinnecock tribe of New York, as well as shared traditions in food, dress and music.

Radmilla Cody, 35, a Native American Music Award-winning singer and anti-domestic violence activist, is also featured in the exhibit. The daughter of a Navajo mother and an African-American father, Cody was raised by her grandmother in the Arizona Navajo community, initially speaking only the Navajo language. In 1997 she was crowned Miss Navajo Nation, sparking controversy from some members who refused to accept her.

Good for her in that she fully embraces both her cultures. And good for all of us that her very public presence is educating many on a relationship that is not all that uncommon.

Here is the full article.

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5 thoughts on “Miss Navajo Nation Is A Symbol Of America

  1. It’s great that she embraces both of her heritages. And how wonderful she was crowned Miss Navajo Nation. It’s sad to read some refused to accept her, but being mixed of Cherokee and Welsh myself, I know how it is and how some refuse to accept you, if you don’t look Indian.

    • Earnest Harris says:

      I had a feeling you would appreciate that post considering your background. Yeah I think that is way cool that she won and was strong enough to put up with ignorance from both sides.

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  3. Ikhvna says:

    I’m black and Choctaw on my father’s side and white and Cherokee on my mother’s. I think it’s beautiful that the relationship between blacks and natives is finally being recognized. The two cultures has so many similarties it shouldn’t be surprising that they blended so seemlessly. I’m proud of Navajo Nation for electing this Miss Navajo and proud of this Miss Navajo for ignoring the ignorance that’s been hurled at her.

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