World-renowned Native poet donates archive to ASU Libraries, Labriola Center

February 20, 2013

In a coup for researchers of Native American culture, renowned Indigenous poet and writer Simon J. Ortiz has donated an archive of his personal papers to Arizona State University. Ortiz’ papers comprise a significant acquisition by the Labriola National American Indian Data Center in Hayden Library on the Tempe campus, where the collection will be housed. 

Ortiz, a Regents’ Professor of English and American Indian Studies, is of Acoma Pueblo heritage. His is a major voice in what is termed the “Native American Renaissance,” a 20th century literary movement. The breadth and scope of this collection will greatly add to scholars’ overall understanding of Ortiz’s substantial body of work. Simon Ortiz, ASU Regents' Professor of English and American Indian Studies Download Full Image

The archive includes Ortiz’s personal and writer’s journals, manuscripts and early drafts, as well as sections of Ortiz’s personal library. It covers the period in the 1970s and 1980s during which Ortiz lived and taught in California at the College of Marin and the San Francisco Arts Institute, until his return to New Mexico to teach at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. Speaking of the books he is donating, Ortiz mused, “The reading regimen of a writer is really everything as we go through our lives. I don’t buy a book to substantiate what I’m doing, but because I’m feeling compelled, or perhaps whimsical. Then, the book becomes a part of the journey.” 

Joyce Martin, curator of the Labriola Center, says that the Ortiz Collection at ASU will have “international significance while functioning as a wonderful research tool for students and faculty around the world who are exploring Indigenous literature.” 

Fellow Pueblo scholar Greg Cajete (Santa Clara Pueblo) assessed the contributions of Ortiz’s writing as it speaks of, and for, Indigenous people: “Indigenous community is a story that is a collection of individual stories ... and when a story finds that special circumstance, when its message is fully received, it induces a direct and powerful understanding. It becomes real teaching. This is the essence of what Simon achieves through his poetry, his fiction, and his nonfiction.”

Ortiz reflected upon his reasons for donating his archive to ASU: “I have been part of the process, the dynamic, and the creative output of what has become known as Indigenous literature, and therefore felt it was important to make this material accessible by providing it to the Labriola Center. Indigenous knowledge creates a foundation, the elemental basis that informs the general body of knowledge of the Americas. The keystone of this foundation is sourced in Indigenous oral tradition, which is expressed in my writing.”

When asked about his choice of ASU in particular to house his papers, Ortiz noted eloquently, “I’m a believer in public institutions. I believe in ASU because the people benefit – here, at the university, in Arizona, in the Southwest, in our community.”

The Ortiz Archives have already begun to attract doctoral students, with more expected when the archives are completed.

The Labriola National American Indian Data Center, part of the ASU Libraries, is a research collection international in scope that brings together in one location current and historic information on government, culture, religion and world view, social life and customs, tribal history, and information on individuals from the United States, Canada, Sonora, and Chihuahua, Mexico.

The Department of English and the American Indian Studies Program are academic units in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at ASU.

Written by Paris Masek and Cynthia Hogue

Media contact:
Kristen LaRue,
Department of English, CLAS

Kristen LaRue

communications specialist, Department of English


Sun Devil women's basketball works overtime to defeat Arizona

February 20, 2013

The "Duel in the Desert" proved to be nothing short of dramatic as the Arizona State women's basketball team downed the Arizona Wildcats, 81-77, in a double-overtime thriller, Feb. 19.

Promise Amukamara (21 points), Joy Burke (18 points) and Haley Videckis (18 points) all had career highs for the Sun Devils (12-15, 4-11 Pac-12). Amukamara, who went 9-13 from the floor, came up with several clutch baskets while playing a career-high 40-plus minutes. Burke, who went 4-4 from the line, also added 10 rebounds, her third consecutive game with 10-plus boards. Download Full Image

Veterans Janae Fulcher (10 points, six rebounds), and Micaela Pickens (11 points, nine rebounds, six assists) rounded out the double-figure scorers for the Sun Devils.

On the other side of the floor, Arizona's Davelynn Whyte had the Wildcats' first triple-double in the program's history, scoring 31 points to go along with 16 rebounds and 10 assists.

The Sun Devils scored the game's first four points and 12 of the game's first 16 to take a 12-4 lead a little more than five minutes into the game.

The Wildcats (12-14, 4-11) would use an 11-3 run later in the half to draw even, 20-20, following Cheshi Poston's layup with 9:19 left in the half.

The Wildcats then tested ASU for the next four minutes; tying the score on three other occasions before a three-pointer by Amukamara put the Devils up by four with 3:28 remaining in the first half.

Arizona would pull within one in the final two minutes, but ASU ultimately took a four-point lead into the locker room.

Trailing by five points less than 90 second into the second half, the Wildcats went on a 15-4 run to take their largest lead of the game, 48-42, with 13 minutes remaining.

Down by five with more than 11 minutes left, the Sun Devils came up with an 11-0 run in the span of 4:30 to take a 58-52 lead. Burke (6 points) and Videckis (5 points) accounted for all 11 points during the scoring run.

Up by five, 63-58 with 1:52 left, the Sun Devils were not able to keep the Wildcats from getting back into the game as Arizona reeled off five straight to tie the game at 63-63 with 69 seconds left.

A layup by Amukamara put the Devils back up by two, but Whyte would respond with a layup of her own to force the game into overtime.

ASU scored the first two baskets of the first overtime to take a 69-65 lead. Once again, however, Arizona was able to come back as it scored the next six points to go up 71-69 with 37 seconds left. Amukamara would see to it that the Sun Devils were not going down without a fight as she scored on a layup up with 18 seconds left to tie the score and send the game into a second overtime.

It would take fewer than three minutes of the second overtime for the two teams to score as many combined points (12) as they had in the entire first overtime. Back and forth they went until, with the scored tied at 77-77, a jumper by Pickens put ASU up for good, 79-77 with 59 seconds left. Fulcher then scored on a layup with 23 seconds left to put the finishing touches on the win.

Tuesday night's game was the first of two between the Sun Devils and the Wildcats this week. The rematch will take place on Sunday (1 p.m. MT) at Wells Fargo Arena in a game that can be seen live on Pac-12 Networks and heard live on The Fan AM 1060. Tickets for the game can be purchased by contacting the Sun Devil ticket office at 480-727-0000.


• The Sun Devils had a season-high 24 assists. It's the 11th time this season ASU has had 15 or more assists in a game. Adrianne Thomas led the way with six assists while Micaela Pickens had five.

• Tuesday's game was the second double-overtime game in program history. The only other one took place vs. No. 5 Long Beach State in 1982 (L, 89-90).

• Burke also had 10 rebounds, her third consecutive game posting double figures in rebounds. She had 11 vs. Utah last Friday and 10 vs. No. 21 Colorado on Sunday.

• ASU's bench outscored Arizona's 21-6.

• ASU has now won 17 of its last 19 games vs. Arizona. Seven of the last 13 contests between the two teams have been decided by eight points or less.

• Tuesday night's game was the first of two between the Sun Devils and the Wildcats this week. The rematch will take place on Sunday (1 p.m. MT) at Wells Fargo Arena in a game that can be seen live on Pac-12 Networks and heard live on The Fan AM 1060. 

Juno Schaser

Event coordinator, Biodesign Institute