The area where the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers meet is a place of multiple and contested meanings for different groups of people. For the state of Minnesota, it is the location of the Historic Fort Snelling and Fort Snelling State Park. For the Dakota Nation, it is the site of their genesis story as well as a site of genocide and forced removal from their homelands. The present study describes what meanings this area has for these groups and defines the dimensions of the dispute over this place.

A purposive sample, consisting of both spoken and written discourse documents, was used for this study. These discourse documents were subjected to a frame analysis in order to discover what frames and framing processes were present regarding this place.

Three master frames of the area were identified: 1) a historical site master frame; 2) a Dakota place master frame; 3) a state park master frame. Each master frame was found to be composed of various sub-frames, diagnostic and prognostic frames, and identity frames. Finally, various levels of frames disputes were identified both between and within these master frames. In describing the dominant discourses of the area compared with Indigenous voices, the study is indicative of how historical inequality is perpetuated and reproduced by the framing of place throughout time.


Steve Buechler

Committee Member

Paul Prew

Committee Member

Chelsea Mead

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)


Social and Behavioral Sciences

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License



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