This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Inspirational Native American Women: Maria Tallchief

1331 words - 6 pages

Maria Tallchief was an inspirational Native American woman for all people to look to as a role model. As a child, she was incredibly gifted in the arts. However, by growing up in an Osage family, she had to endure hardships, like bullying, that no child should ever go through. Her dreams, on the other hand, took her places when she got older. She is credited with being the first Native American prima ballerina. Because of her worldwide productions and success, Tallchief met many people and received numerous awards. This woman left behind a legacy that is a gift to the world. Maria Tallchief, of the Osage tribe, became one of the most adored and experienced ballerinas after overcoming misconceptions about her race.

Maria Tallchief had an artistic childhood. She was born on January 24, 1925, in Fairfax, Oklahoma, on the Osage Indian Reserve. Her father was a full-blooded Osage Native American. However, her mother was Scottish and Irish. As a child, Tallchief loved playing outside. She enjoyed practicing piano and doing ballet, too (Technological Solutions, Inc.). Sometimes, her mother would sneak her to see an Osage pow-wow, so she could experience their culture through what she loved. The arts had such a large impact on her that she devoted most of her free time to piano and ballet. This time of happiness did not last long, however. When Tallchief was eight, her family moved to Los Angeles, California, and everything changed.

For Maria Tallchief, moving to California brought struggles and hardships, but some things really helped her grow as a dancer. For example, at public schools in Beverly Hills, no one respected her background. The children would make fun of her last name. Also, the kids made war whoops at her and asked why she did not wear feathers. Some even wondered if her father scalped people. For her, this was troublesome. It did not help that her father was an alcoholic and yelled at the family. Misconceptions and stereotypes caused some of her ballet numbers in shows to be based on Native Americans. At one performance early on, she had to wear pointe shoes under moccasins, a headband with feathers on it, bells on her legs, and a fringed buckskin outfit. In addition to all of that, she had to dance to tom-tom music (Tallchief, 1997, pp. 4-18). Good things did come later, however. For instance, she started taking ballet at Mr. Belcher's School of Ballet. While there, she really found her drive to become a better ballerina even though she had to give up practicing piano for two hours a day. Later, she switched dance schools and started taking ballet from Bronislava Nijinska, a famous Russian ballerina. Tallchief was there for five years, and in that small period of time, she flourished into the powerful and beautiful dancer she is known to be today. Because of this teacher and this school, she developed a dream. This one dream would be the thing that opened doors for her as a ballerina. This dream impacted her life forever.

Maria...

Find Another Essay On Inspirational Native American Women: Maria Tallchief

Native American Mascots Essay

595 words - 3 pages racist and derogatory to use Native Americans as mascots. One town in Montana, Ronan, calls its sports teams the “Chiefs” and the “Maidens”. In several Native American cultures, maidens are considered less than or lower than women. Also, the mascots of other schools are often animals. Using Native Americans as mascots groups them with these animals. Finally, Native American mascots are a giant stereotype of the entire Native American culture. All

Sojourner Truth’s Story Essay

899 words - 4 pages Sojourner Truth is an American legend. She began life as a slave and ended her life as an outgoing speaker and free woman. Sojourner led a very disadvantage life but was able to rise above her hardships. Truth was a motivational speaker even though she was not able to read or write. Sojourner Truth continues to impact lives today through her works. Isabella Baumfree was born in 1797 in Ulster County, New York (Women in History). Isabella

Maria Martinez and Her Pueblo Pottery

1571 words - 6 pages Maria Martinez and Her Pueblo Pottery One of the most well known figures of the twentieth century pottery world is Maria Martinez. Maria Martinez is a Pueblo Indian part of the San Ildefondo tribe. Pueblo pottery from the American Southwest holds a unique place in ceramic art forms of American art. It is full of age-old tradition and culture handed down form family members and potters of the past. The old Pueblo ways of

Native Peoples: Learning About The Extensive Native American Culture

984 words - 4 pages . According to the Mailing List Finder of Native Peoples Magazine, it is said that the majority of the audience is college-educated readers and mostly occupy positions such as professional managers. The other percentages of readers are those of American Indian descent. However, after analyzing the content in Native Peoples Magazine, I have realized that it appeals to young adults, middle-aged, college-educated women, as well as to men who are

Maria Mitchell

1507 words - 6 pages astronomical events. Maria Mitchell continued her own research in studying the surface features of Jupiter and Saturn and photographing stars. In 1869 she was the first woman elected to the American Philosophical Society. In 1873, she helped found the American Association for the Advancement of Women and served as its president from 1874 to 1876. In 1873 she attended the first meeting of the Women's Congress. The Congress was also attended by many

Native American vs. European Way of Life

582 words - 2 pages Europeans did. However, some exceptions to this cultural system occurred in the more modern empires of the Aztec and Inca and, in North America, among tribes such as the Natchez. Europeans’ views of women were in sharp contrast to those of Native Americans. Women in European societies enjoyed very little social importance. In Native American societies, women also held inferior positions, but not to the degree instituted among European women

Native American Violence

1259 words - 6 pages Americans, many stereotypes arose regarding Native Americans, especially in American pop culture. According to Indians of the Midwest, Native Americans have been portrayed in American pop culture capturing and killing whites since the 18th century (“Stereotypes”). Realistically, non-natives were the real perpetrators, as they mercilessly captured and sometimes murdered Native American women and children throughout the 18th and 19th century, yet these

Toni Morrison And “Jazz”

2692 words - 11 pages Toni Morrison And "Jazz" Toni Morrison is one of the most celebrated African-American authors of our time. She "has become a distinctive literary voice in the 20th Century, and her works have become essential reading in the body of contemporary American fiction" (Random House 1). Morrison writes about the African-American experience in different times in American history. She also portrays African-American women as heroes in many of her

Analysis of Inventing The Savage: The Social Construct of Native American Criminality by Luana Ross

1554 words - 7 pages Inventing the Savage: The Social Construct of Native American Criminality. Luana Ross. Austin: University of Texas Press. 1998. There is much literature about African American and Hispanic offenders and the punishment of males in the criminal justice system; however, there is not much literature on either Native Americans or women offenders in the criminal justice system. Luana Ross attempts to break this trend with her research in Inventing

The Use of Racial Stereotype in Cinema

2003 words - 8 pages depicts General Custer and his men intruding upon a peaceful Cheyenne encampment and brutally murdering men, women and children. Earlier cinematic Westerns depict the U.S. Cavalries, along with the Cowboy, as the heroes of the West, who protect the helpless American settlers from vicious ‘Indian’ invasions (Kasdan, Tavernetti 130). By contrast, it is now the Native Americans who are fleeing from the remorselessness of the U.S Cavalry, framing

Maria Mitchell

938 words - 4 pages MARIA MITCHELL The person that I chose for the Womenƒ­s History Month report is Maria Mitchell, who was a self- taught astronomer. She discovered Comet Mitchell and made amazing achievements throughout her life. Maria Mitchell was born on August 1, 1818 on the Massachusetts island of Nantucket to William and Lydia Mitchell. When Maria Mitchell was growing up in the Quaker community, few girls were allowed to study astronomy and higher

Similar Essays

The Role Of Native American Women

1053 words - 4 pages gender roles of both men and women. There are many customs that have seemed odd to the average American throughout the centuries, but Indians found these a normal way of life. Even the lifestyles of Native Americans were unique, from hunting animals to tanning buffalo hides. Gender was a major factor in the duties that were expected. Native American women had some power over men, they were restricted to maintain their roles and duties in their

Historical Challenges That Native American Women Have Faced

736 words - 3 pages Martha Garcia and Paula Gunn Allen both write in their essays of the challenges that Native American women have historically faced and continue to confront to this day. Major contributors to these challenges are the stereotypes and misconceptions by white male anthropologists and missionaries who studied the Native American tribes and found the women subservient and passive. Both of these authors strongly disagree in this characterization of

Life Of Lydia Maria Child Essay

815 words - 4 pages Lydia Maria Child was one of the most influential women from the 1800s. She was a writer, abolitionist, and women’s’ rights activist, and in 2001 was honored by the National Women’s Hall Of Fame. She was born Lydia Francis on February 11, 1802, in Medford, Massachusetts, to parents Susannah Rand Francis and Convers Francis, and was the youngest of their seven children. However, her time with her parents was cut short when, in 1814, her mother

The Importance Of Women In The Colonial World

2720 words - 11 pages colonial times by discussing gender roles, the evolution of society, and male dominance ideology. Leacock gathered articles that directly represent women's roles in an economic position as in horticulture and land ownership, and their high status in their own tribe. She also goes through the struggles and hardships some societies of native women had to go through. In the book American Indian Holocaust and