The Ohio State University at Newark

Ohio State Newark Assistant Professor Writes Book about Pokagon Potawatomi Indians

NEWARK, Ohio, February 9, 2016 — A book written by Ohio State Newark Assistant Professor of Comparative Studies John Low is being released this month. The book is titled Imprints: The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians and the City of Chicago.

“This is a book about my community of Indians,” said Low. “The book is the result of research I started 12 years ago about my tribe and its relationship with the city of Chicago.”

Low’s book examines the ways some Pokagon Potawatomi tribal members have maintained a distinct Native identity, their rejection of assimilation into the mainstream, and their desire for inclusion in the larger contemporary society. Mindful that contact is never a one-way street, Low also examines the ways in which experiences in Chicago have influenced the Pokagon Potawatomi.

“I think it’s important for tribal people to collect the stories and histories of their people,” said Low. “A lot of non-tribal people have written books about us. This is the first book about Pokagon Potawatomi written by a member of the Pokagon Potawatomi.

Low received his doctorate degree in American Culture at the University of Michigan and is an enrolled citizen of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians. He is an assistant professor in comparative studies but also teaches in history and American Indian studies at Ohio State Newark.

“Some people in Chicago are aware of the relationship the city has with the Pokagon Potawatomi and some are not,” said Low. “It’s a story I believe needed to be told.” The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians has been a part of Chicago since its founding. Throughout the city’s history, the Pokagon Potawatomi Indians have openly and aggressively expressed their refusal to be marginalized or forgotten—and in doing so, they have contributed to the fabric and history of the city.

The 328-page book examines at the relationship between the tribe and the city from 1833 to present day. It is being published by Michigan State University Press.

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