Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert (Hopi)
- Associate Professor
American Indian Studies and History
- Office: American Indian Studies, Room 2005
- Visit website
Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert is enrolled with the Hopi Tribe from the village of Upper Moencopi in northeastern Arizona. Centering his research and teaching on Native American history and the history of the American West, he examines the history of American Indian education, the Indian boarding school experience, and American Indians and sports. In addition to publishing articles on Hopi history and producing a documentary film -- Beyond the Mesas -- on the Hopi boarding school experience, he has authored a book entitled Education beyond the Mesas: Hopi Students at Sherman Institute, 1902-1929 (University of Nebraska Press, 2010). Furthermore, he is co-editor of the anthology The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue: Voices and Images from Sherman Institute (Oregon State University Press, 2012) and the author of "A New Foreword to the Second Edition of Don C. Talayesva's Sun Chief: The Autobiography of a Hopi Indian."
His first book, Education beyond the Mesas, examines the Hopi experience at Sherman Institute, an off-reservation Indian boarding school in Riverside, California. Advancing the contributions of other scholars in the fields of history, education, and indigenous studies, Sakiestewa Gilbert uncovers the complex ways that Hopi history and culture intersected with U.S. government policies. In addition to providing a historical narrative, the book challenges the notion that a study on the Indian boarding school experience must be understood primarily through a defined framework of Indian education policies. Highlighting Native agency, the book also explores the many ways that Indian pupils -- Zunis, Navajos, Apaches and other Indian people -- brought their identities to school and how they responded to their boarding school experience as people from indigenous communities.
In his second monograph (in progress) entitled HOPI RUNNERS: Crossing the Terrain Between Indian and American, 1908-1932 (under contract with University Press of Kansas), he examines the way Hopi marathon runners navigated between tribal dynamics, school loyalties, and a country that closely associated sports with U.S. nationalism. He calls attention to Hopi philosophies of running that connected the runners to their village communities and to the internal and external forces that supported and strained these cultural ties when Hopis competed in U.S. marathons. He argues that between 1908 and 1932, the cultural identity of Hopi runners challenged white American perceptions of modernity and placed them in a context that had national and international dimensions. This broad perspective linked Hopi runners to athletes from around the world, including runners from Japan and Ireland, and caused non-Natives to reevaluate their understandings of sports, nationhood, and the cultures of indigenous people.
Prior to his current post in American Indian Studies & History, Professor Sakiestewa Gilbert served as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in American Indian Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and as an adjunct faculty in history at the University of Redlands, Azusa Pacific University, San Bernardino Valley Community College, and The Master's College.
In addition to his research and teaching responsibilities, he is co-editor (with Coll Thrush and Charlotte Cote) of the book series - Indigenous Confluences - with the University of Washington Press. He also serves on the editorial board of the History of Education Quarterly, and he is a past board member of the Hopi Education Endowment Fund (HEEF).
He received his Ph.D. and M.A. in history from the University of California, Riverside, and holds a M.A. in theology from Talbot School of Theology/Biola University.
- AIS 101: Introduction to American Indian Studies
- AIS 140: Native Religious Traditions
- AIS 481: History of Indian Education
- AIS 490: American Indians and Sports
- HIST/AIS 278: Native American History Since 1850
- HIST 476: History of the American West
- Spur Award for "Marathoner Louis Tewanima and the Continuity of Hopi Running, 1908-1912," Best Western Short Nonfiction, Western Writers of America (2013)
- Helen Corley Petit Scholar Award, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2013-2014)
Clifford E. Trafzer, Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert, and Lorene Sisquoc (eds), The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue: Voices and Images from Sherman Institute (Oregon State University Press, 2012).
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, Education beyond the Mesas: Hopi Students at Sherman Institute, 1902-1929 (University of Nebraska Press, 2010)
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "Marathoner Louis Tewanima and the Continuity of Hopi Running, 1908-1912, " Western Historical Quarterly (Autumn 2012), Vol. 43, pp. 324-346.
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "Hopi Footraces and American Marathons, 1912-1930," American Quarterly (March 2010), Vol. 62, No. 1, pp. 77-101.
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "'The Hopi Followers': Chief Tawaquaptewa and Hopi Student Advancement at Sherman Institute, 1906-1909, " Journal of American Indian Education, (Fall 2005) Vol. 44, No. 2, pp. 1-23.
Selected Book Contributions
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "A New Foreword to the Second Edition of Don C. Talayesva's Sun Chief: The Autobiography of a Hopi Indian" (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2013).
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, Fort Apache,in LeAnne Howe, Harvey Markowitz, and Denise Cummings (eds.), Seeing Red, Hollywood's Pixeled Skins (East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 2013) 22-24.
Clifford E. Trafzer, Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert, and Lorene Sisquoc, "The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue," in Clifford E. Trafzer, Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert, and Lorene Sisquoc (eds.), The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue:Voices and Images from Sherman Institute (Corvallis: Oregon State University Press, 2012), 1-18.
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "An Open Vault," in Clifford E. Trafzer, Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert, and Lorene Sisquoc (eds.), The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue:Voices and Images from Sherman Institute (Corvallis: Oregon State University Press, 2012), 209-213.
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "Dark Days: American Presidents and Native Sovereignty, 1880-1930," in Clifford E. Trafzer and National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution (eds.), American Indians / American Presidents: A History (New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2009), pp. 109-143.
Sakiestewa Gilbert, Matthew, "'I Learned to Preach Pretty Well, and to Cuss, Too': Hopi Acceptance and Rejection of Christianity at Sherman Institute, 1906-1928," in MariJo Moore (ed.) Eating Fire, Tasting Blood: An Anthology of the American Indian Holocaust (New York: Thunder's Mouth Press, 2006), pp. 78-95.
Works in Progress
HOPI RUNNERS: Crossing the Terrain Between Indian and American, 1908-1932 (book monograph, under contract with the University Press of Kansas, CultureAmerica Series)
"Hopi Runners and the Race to Modernity in the American West, 1890-1930" (journal article)