Essay on Heteropatriarchy & Settler Colonization: The Social-Economic Impact

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  6
Wordcount:  1377 Words
Date:  2023-02-12

Part One

Heteropatriarchy is associated with a social-economic system whereby the heterosexuals and other people with different sexual orientations, and identities based on gender tend to rule over themselves and people around them. Settler colonization occurs when foreign immigrants invade a given place and rule over the indigenous people to develop an identity and sovereignty over the natives. The type of colonialism occurs when these heterosexuals and cisgenders decide to settle in on place and dictate what other people with the normal sexual orientations should do. One of the tenets of settler colonialism mentioned by Dunbar-Ortiz or Nakano Glenn is Narragansett Indian settlers (Smiles, 145). Such tenets decided to control the resources, space, and development of private properties in the foreign land. These people also get the right over political systems in a colony and also are capable of owning property which forces the indigenous people to move out.

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Heteropatriarchy was evident in these areas whereby the Narragansett were dispossessed of their land. They were a large community which was later reduced to less than 500 people who were struggling to maintain their cultural heritage and identity over their property. There were structural constraints that were associated with this type of colonialism that led to historical dispossessions. There was violence, legal frameworks, state government, and the law enforcing agencies that facilitated settler colonialism. In the present set up, still, settler colonization occurs whereby the heterosexuals and the cisgender males and females invade a place and dictate what is happening in those places. For instance, in Tommy Orange's novel, a painful history is expressed whereby the inheritance of beauty, spirituality, and cases of abuse and suicide are associated with settler colonialism (Orange, 211). The natives in a given colony feel that they are being bullied and disturbed, making them think distracted and discouraged to continue staying in the area.

The novels also explain about the twelve characters from the native communities, who suffered as a result of settler colonization. They were forced to travel from their land to Big Oakland Powwow to find peace and settle. Settler colonialism makes people feel discouraged and hurt in the long run as they are forced to move from their land and start adapting to new areas. At times, it becomes difficult to control this kind of colonialism due to the nature of its causes. For instance, when many people with same characteristics and qualities such as the heterosexuals invade a place, the owners of such places will opt to run away to join people who they feel they share similar characters.

Part Two: Edwin Black

Edwin Black is an American columnist and journalist that majored on investigating various troubles that were facing societies in his time. Black is specialized in human rights and has succeeded in highlighting multiple issues that are affecting his people (Black, 2003). Black's work is closely related to Orange's work, "There There," whereby settler colonialism is evident in some of the scenes that the author has highlighted. The novel talks about the violence, memory, recovery, and the identity of the history of a nation and its people. The twelve characters were traveling to Big Oakland Powwow. Everybody had his or her reason to travel, but all were associated with settler colonialism.

One of the scenes from "There, There" by Tommy Orange talks about settler colonialism in the city of Oakland in California. Most of the characters born in this city are committed to staying in their native city where their ancestors lived. These characters represent the personal journeys of the people in indigenous communities who struggled to fight settlers who were trying to vacate them. The native communities believed that they were the rightful heirs to the property since their ancestors lived there. However, due to the effect of settler colonialism, they are forced to move out, leaving the distressed (Orange, 32). Oakland city represents the theme of urbanity as a result of colonialism. The author notes,

"The urban setting of Oakland also reinforces the novel's theme of modernity and urbanity, giving the characters a chance to demonstrate what an "urban Indian" looks like away from the violent stereotypes of the reservation Indian and the tradition-bound primitive." (99)

The settlers of Oakland City spent lived in distress due to the violence that forced them to integrate with the natives and formed one big community. The novel shows some of the characters that best explains the settler colonialism.

The story presents Dene as one of the characters whose story helps the author to convey his thought about settler colonialism. Through Dene, the author makes a crucial intervention that presents the lives of native people in the city. Orange manages to balance their need for proper representation of all communities living in a given area to help them fight damages that are associated with hardship situations in their lives. The character helps the author to bring out the value of recognizing human struggles and need to put up the required measures to prevent them from being mistreated. For instance, the Indian constitution takes care of these native communities, which are being threatened to be chased away (Orange, 2018). Dene is a devoted native citizen in Oakland who believes that he had all the rights to inherit the ancestral land which was taken away by the settlers who came and took it apart (Orange, 150). Dene is appreciating and honoring his uncle, who passed away as a result of alcoholism. Dene's uncle was committed to ensuring that he recovered their land. Even though his uncle passed away, he continued his vision to solve issues that were caused by settler colonialism, for instance, loss of valuable property.

Orange uses various poetic devices to pass his message to the readers and to explain the native struggles people were going through. For instance, the central theme the author points out the identity and the community where these native people came from, including Dene. The author believes there was a need for the identity of the native community who have been oppressed for a longer time. European and some Americans came as settlers and started dictating ways the native communities (Orange, 2018). For instance, setters decided to define the native communities and reallocate them to other places.

The native communities were commanded to which places they were to stay and which schools they were supposed to attend. The suffering made Dene wake up and realize that he could do something to reclaim their land back. Orange felt that the native communities had a responsibility, so save themselves from the stress they were subjected to by the foreigners. The author also uses symbolism to help readers understand various issues. For instance, the Indian heads used in the book symbolize the stereotypes of the violence that Indians were being subjected to. The creation of Me Gibson heads which were rolling down the temple symbolizes the struggles of native communities (Orange, 2018). In another example of symbolism, Metacomet's head represents oppression that Indian faced in the sports sector in one of the commercial shows. The other believed that the native communities had a responsibility to salvage themselves.


Conclusively, the author succeeds in conveying the suffering people undergo as a result of settler colonialism. From the authors' point of view, people have a responsibility to save themselves. There is a need for the natives to reorganize themselves and fight for their rights. The Senate and House of Representatives in the US have taken the necessary steps to alienate the Indians from suffering. The motive of the senate is to help the Indians who reside near the Indian reservation to get decent jobs in their land. The legislature also provides counseling and guidance on various issues affecting them, including job training. The secretary of the house is committed to ensuring all adhere to those rules to help the natives live well in their land. When people stay in harmony with one another, there exists peace and harmony leading to development of such areas. Settlers should not dictate how people live in a given area when they come to settle.

Works Cited

Black, Edwin. "War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America's campaign to create a master race." New York (2003).

Orange, Tommy. There there: A novel. Knopf, 2018.

Smiles, Deondre. "... to the Grave"-Autopsy, settler structures, and indigenous counter-conduct." Geoforum 91 (2018): 141-150.

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Essay on Heteropatriarchy & Settler Colonization: The Social-Economic Impact. (2023, Feb 12). Retrieved from

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