Date of Award

Fall 1-5-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Leo Coleman

Second Advisor

Jacqueline N. Brown

Academic Program Adviser

Yukiko Koga


This thesis discusses the imposition of a “liminal” identity among non-federally recognized American Indian tribes pursuing federal recognition through the Federal Acknowledgment Process. By requiring a tribe to simultaneously appear as both intelligible/similar to and distinctive/different from American society, the “liminal” identity fails to be maintained, barring a tribe’s recognition.



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