Compréhension orale | Native American History
A | The beginning
They were the first people ever to live in North America. Exactly when they came and how they arrived it’s still a mystery. But many scientists believe that as long as 30,000 years ago some hunters from Asia walk or sailed along the coast of a land bridge that once connected Russia to Alaska. Their decedents became known as native Americans, or American Indians. As they spread out across the vast continent Native Americans adapted to living in different regions and hundreds of unique cultures were born.
B | The arrival of white settlers
When the first white settlers arrived in the 1500s, about one million Native Americans lived north of Mexico. But the outsiders changed everything. Diseases from Europe such as smallpox and tuberculosis wiped out entire tribes. Settlers began to claim Indian lands for themselves. Some tribes resisted and fought back. Others attempted to cooperate. In the end the result was the same. In the late 1800s the US government forced the remaining Indians to leave their traditional homelands and live on tracks of land called “Reservations”. Over the next century native Americans continue to fight for their rights through political activism. (…)
C | Today’s situation
Today there are more than 550 federally recognized tribes in the United States. Native Americans are working to improve living conditions on the reservations, and to preserve their languages, religions and cultural identities.
(…). Other native American artists are reviving their tribes’ traditional artform – a movement which could help these unique cultures survive into the next century.