Dr. Alexandra (Sasha) Harmon taught in the American Indian Studies Program from 1995 to 2015. She received her B.A. from Stanford University in 1966. After graduating from Yale Law School in 1972, she advised and represented Indian tribes in Washington State for over 15 years. In 1988 she entered the graduate history program at the University of Washington in order to research and write about issues that arose for tribes during her years as an attorney. Dr. Harmon received her Ph.D. in History in 1995.
Dr. Harmon's research examines histories of American Indians, with specific attention to their relations with non-Indians, to changing legal cultures, to ethnic, racial, and tribal identities, and to influences of and changes in economic cultures.
Dr. Harmon has published articles on Indian economic history, Indian treaties with the United States, and the history of Indians in the Puget Sound Region. Her book Indians in the Making: Ethnic Relations and Indian Identities around the Puget Sound won the 1999 Washington Governor's Writer's Award. Dr. Harmon's more recent book, Rich Indians: Native People and the Problem of Wealth in American History, analyzes several instances in the past when Indians had substantial wealth. It focuses specifically on consequent public discourses concerning economic culture, morality, and power and their relationship to Indian identity.
Dr. Harmon teaches:
AIS 330 - U.S. - Indian Relations
AIS 335 - American Indians and the Law
AIS 370 - Researching Indians' History Joint listed with (HSTAA 315)
AIS 425 - Indians in Western Washington History (HSTAA 417)
AIS 446 - American Indian Economic History (HSTAA 446)
HSTAA 517 - Graduate Field Course in American Indian History
- Alexandra Harmon, Reclaiming the Reservation: Histories of Indian Sovereignty Suppressed and Renewed. University of Washington Press, 2019.
- Alexandra Harmon. "From Dispossessed Ward to Citizen Activists: American Indians Survive the Assimilation Policy Era," in A COMPANION TO THE GILDED AGE AND PROGRESSIVE ERA, edited by Christopher M. Nichols and Nancy C. Unger, p. 124. Malden, MA: Wiley Blackwell, 2017.
- "Indians in the Marketplace." The Oxford Handbook of American Indian History, edited by Frederick E. Hoxie. Oxford University Press, 2016.
- Harmon, Alexandra. "American Indians, American Law, and Modern American Foreign Relations." Diplomatic History (2015).
- Alexandra Harmon, Colleen O’Neill and Paul C. Rosier.“Interwoven Economic Histories: American Indians in a Capitalist America.” Journal of American History 98 (Dec. 2011): 698-722
- Harmon, Alexandra. Rich Indians: Native People and the Problem of Wealth in American History. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2010.
- Harmon, Alexandra, ed. The Power of Promises: Perspectives on Pacific Northwest Indian Treaties. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2008
- Harmon, Alexandra. “Coast Salish History,” in Be of Good Mind: Essays on the Coast Salish, edited by Bruce G. Miller. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2007
- Harmon, Alexandra. “Indian Treaty History: A Subject for Agile Minds,” Oregon Historical Quarterly 106 (Fall 2005): 358-373.
- Harmon, Alexandra. “American Indians and Land Monopolies in the Gilded Age,” Journal of American History 90 (June 2003): 106-133
- Harmon, Alexandra. “Wanted: More Histories of Indian Identity,” in A Companion to American Indian History, ed. Philip J. Deloria and Neal Salisbury. Malden, Mass., and Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 2002
- Harmon, Alexandra. “Tribal Enrollment Councils: Lessons on Law and Indian Identity,” Western Historical Quarterly 32 (Summer 2001): 175-200
- Harmon, Alexandra. Indians in the Making: Ethnic Relations and Indian Identities around Puget Sound. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1998
- Harmon, Alexandra. “The Non-Indian Problem: Law, History, and the Quest for Tribal Sovereignty,” a projected monograph analyzing the history of Indian tribes’ efforts to govern non-Indians within reservations.