American Indian Threat

After receiving my Ph.D., I overheard a conversation between colleagues in which one of them claimed that I had only gotten through the program because I was an enrolled American Indian, with the clear implication being that I did not deserve the degree and had only been allowed through for fear of lawsuits and perhaps to bolster minority graduation statistics.  Though I took some solace in the fact that my dissertation had been published by a major academic publisher as a book, which would have never happened if it hadn’t “measured up,” it still brought hurt and self-doubt.