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At UC Berkeley, rethinking Ishi a century later

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

imageIshi, the man mythologized as “California’s last wild Indian” who came down out of the Sierras in 1911 and lived out his life as a cultural amusement and unwitting celebrity in San Francisco, may be due for an image makeover. The iconic Yahi Indian is the subject of a conference at UC Berkeley today, where anthropologists are expected to present him more as an “educator” rather than a descendant of a vanished culture, the Chronicle says.

Add: Nicole Lim, executive director of the California Indian Museum and Cultural Center in Santa Rosa tells the Chronicle:

“Ishi definitely suffered a lot of loss during his lifetime and didn't know anybody when he came to San Francisco, but he didn't harbor any hatred or resentment. He really valued human relationships, and these are important things that should be taught about his life and legacy."

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