Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West
Immediately recognized as a revelatory and enormously controversial book since its first publication in 1971, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee is universally recognized as one of those rare books that forever changes the way its subject is perceived. Now repackaged with a new introduction from bestselling author Hampton Sides to coincide with a major HBO dramatic film of the book, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee.
Using council records, autobiographies, and firsthand descriptions, Brown allows great chiefs and warriors of the Dakota, Ute, Sioux, Cheyenne, and other tribes to tell us in their own words of the series of battles, massacres, and broken treaties that finally left them and their people demoralized and decimated. A unique and disturbing narrative told with force and clarity, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee changed forever our vision of how the West was won, and lost. It tells a story that should not be forgotten, and so must be retold from time to time.
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If you would like to understand American foreign policy read this.
I continue to be amazed at how much impact Americans attribute to this book. Why did it take Dee Brown's Bury My Heart finally to accept a reality that had been there all along? Yes, it is a meticulously documented history of the genocide of Native Americans, characterized by lies, distortion and the bloodlust that white soldiers had acquired particularly, though not exclusively, thanks to the civil war. But why was this information news in the early seventies when the book came out? Except for the comprehensiveness and, perhaps some of the details, there is little in this book that I didn't read as a boy in Germany during the early sixties . Way back then, I was shocked at General Sheridan's statement that "the only good Indian is a dead Indian." Only later I learned that some of the good people of Wyoming had named a town after him .
Dee Brown's most important contribution, rather than merely weaving the many details into a cohesive narrative, may have been that the book, due to its comprehensiveness, turned out to be a whole lot more unsettling than the story of one tribe alone could have been.Still, the information had been collected in smaller compilatioms and had been available for a long time. I'm just not so sure that "Manifest Destiny" didn't finally lose its grip on the American conscousness unti the publication of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee.
As an academic work in history, we should not read it uncritically. Not all fact adduced by Brown, regardless of whom they may cast a bad or good light on a person are undisputed. In this book, Brown certainly spends more intensity on the effort to show how confliced some of the Indian leaders themselves were. Brown is rather quick in depicting Indians who went out on raids of white people's settlements as going against the orders of the chief. Be that as it may, they were still of the same tribes, and knew what was expected from them.
I hate to place a cathartic book on an "essential reading list." Let's just say that if you read only one cathartic book over the next little while, this one could be it.
Their Manners Are Decorous and Praiseworthy
The Long Walk of the Navahos
CHAPTER TWO 1 Manuelito
Juanita wife of Manuelito
Navaho warrior of the 1860s
Little Crows War
CHAPTER THREE 4 Little Crow
CHAPTER ELEVEN 18 Satanta
The War for the Black Hills
CHAPTER TWELVE 24 Sitting Bull
War Comes to the Cheyennes
CHAPTER FOUR 6 Cheyenne and Arapaho Chiefs in Denver
George Bent and his wife Magpie
Powder River Invasion
CHAPTER FIVE 10 Red Cloud
Red Clouds War
CHAPTER SIX 11 Spotted Tail
The Only Good Indian Is a Dead Indian
CHAPTER SEVEN 12 Roman Nose
The Rise and Fall of Donehogawa
CHAPTER EIGHT 14 Donehogawa Ely Parker
Cochise and the Apache Guerrillas
CHAPTER NINE 15 Cochise
The Ordeal of Captain Jack
CHAPTER TEN 17 Captain Jack
The War to Save the Buffalo
Little Big Man
The Flight of the Nez Perces
CHAPTER THIRTEEN 32 Chief Joseph
CHAPTER FOURTEEN 33 Dull Knife
Standing Bear Becomes a Person
CHAPTER FIFTEEN 35 Standing Bear
The Utes Must Go
CHAPTER SIXTEEN 36 Ouray
The Last of the Apache Chiefs
Dance of the Ghosts
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