Federal Indian Law
This course provides an overview of federal Indian law through a study of cases and historical and contemporary materials. It covers the basic conflicts among sovereign governments which dominate this area of law, especially conflicts over criminal, civil adjudicative, and regulatory jurisdiction. Special attention is given to the status and sovereign powers of Indian nations as recognized under United States law, the federal trust responsibility, and the equal protection issues posed by federal and state legislation singling out Indian nations and tribal members. Federal statutory regimes will be included. Students should gain a critical understanding of the basic tenets of Indian law, the bases of tribal sovereignty, the structure of the federal-tribal relationship and its history, and a sense of the future directions the courts, tribes, and Congress may take in addressing current legal issues in Indian country.