Dana Lloyd earned her Ph.D. from the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. Her dissertation, entitled “Between God and Land: On Sovereignty, Indigeneity, and Religious Freedom,” focuses on the U.S. Supreme Court case Lyng v. Northwest Indian Cemetery Protective Association, a 1988 landmark case that denied the right of three American Indian nations to the free exercise of their religion for the sake of protecting property rights of the federal government. She completed law school and holds an LL.M. and an M.A. in Philosophy from Tel Aviv University.
Neither the government nor the Court doubted the religiosity of the practice for which the Yurok, Karuk, and Tolowa nations sought protection. Yet, arguments about religious freedom obscured the true issues at stake and the need for sovereign freedom.