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Topic: Indigenous Resources: Books

Access to the University Libraries' book collections

The University libraries are open to all and visitors are welcome to browse and use our collections on site.  Books may be checked out by University of St. Thomas faculty, staff, and students, as well as alumni and Friends of the Library.

Ebooks require a University of St. Thomas login.  Visitors to the library may use our visitor computers to read ebooks in the library.  

Searching for books

Use our online discovery tool, LibrarySearch to search for books in our collection, along with books at our CLIC consortium schools.

Keep in mind while searching that many of the terms used to talk about Indigenous and Native Peoples have changed over time.  See below for more discussion on the subject headings used in our library. 

  • Use the terms Native American, Amerindian, IndianFirst Peoples or indigenous as keywords
  • Search by the name of a particular tribe or cultural group, keeping in mind that there may be alternate spellings and anglicizations (e.g. Ojibwe, Chippewa and Anishinaabe)

Outdated terminology in the Library of Congress subject headings

The Library of Congress uses controlled vocabularies and subject headings to classify bibliographic material. These subject headings are standardized, and they are difficult to change. Problematically, the United States' colonial history is evident in the way the Library of Congress has historically classified certain topics. This issue is nowhere more apparent than in its classification of issues surrounding Native American, First Nations', and indigenous peoples' history and culture. 

Currently, the Library of Congress still uses outdated terminology to classify Native American topics and issues. Some subject headings that you are likely to see include:

Slowly over time, advocates have been petitioning the Library of Congress to update its controlled subject heading vocabulary to provide an authentic representation of Native Americans' lived experiences. As the transition from older to newer terminology is accomplished, we find many resources have a blend of older and newer subject headings. Newer subject headings include

This section on Library of Congress Subject Headings is adapted from the Franklin Pierce University Library guide, Native American Literature: Library of Congress Subject Headings.

Selected books from our collection