Indians of All Tribes

A Call to Action


As Native peoples across the country celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Indian occupation of Alcatraz (1969-1971) this fall, many newspapers, magazines and networks are filing stories that attempt to assess both the event's immediate impact as well as its cultural legacy. While many of these stories center on the perspectives of occupation leaders like John Trudell -- who appropriately deemed the Alcatraz occupation "a rekindling of the spirit" for Native peoples -- few of these retrospectives delve into how the event transformed the lives of the many young people who took part in the occupation. The following first-person essay reflects the experiences of Sylvia Polacca (Hopi/Tewa/Havasupai), who as a young teen left her reservation to join the group that occupied the island of Alcatraz, the group that called itself "Indians of All Nations." The photos in this special section of RED INK depict daily life on the island during the occupation as seen through the eyes of Polacca...

Resource Type

Polacca, Sylvia. "A Call to Action." Red Ink: A Native American Student Publication. Vol. 8, No. 1. American Indian Studies Program, The University of Arizona. Tucson, Arizona. 1999: 20-27. Article.