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Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West [Paperback]

Dee Brown , Amy Ehrlich
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 15 1993
Dee Brown's bestselling adult book, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, opened the eyes of a generation to the Indian struggle to survive the white man's expansion. This young adult edition relates the profoundly disturbing story of the plunder of the great Indian nations.

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From Amazon

First published in 1970, this extraordinary book changed the way Americans think about the original inhabitants of their country. Beginning with the Long Walk of the Navajos in 1860 and ending 30 years later with the massacre of Sioux men, women, and children at Wounded Knee in South Dakota, it tells how the American Indians lost their land and lives to a dynamically expanding white society. During these three decades, America's population doubled from 31 million to 62 million. Again and again, promises made to the Indians fell victim to the ruthlessness and greed of settlers pushing westward to make new lives. The Indians were herded off their ancestral lands into ever-shrinking reservations, and were starved and killed if they resisted. It is a truism that "history is written by the victors"; for the first time, this book described the opening of the West from the Indians' viewpoint. Accustomed to stereotypes of Indians as red savages, white Americans were shocked to read the reasoned eloquence of Indian leaders and learn of the bravery with which they and their peoples endured suffering. With meticulous research and in measured language overlaying brutal narrative, Dee Brown focused attention on a national disgrace. Still controversial but with many of its premises now accepted, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee has sold 5 million copies around the world. Thirty years after it first broke onto the national conscience, it has lost none of its importance or emotional impact. --John Stevenson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

This 1970 volume greatly changed the view of pioneers' westward advancement. Based largely on primary source materials, this volume details how white settlers forced Indian tribes off the plains, often simply by killing them. Though Hollywood and penny dreadfuls portrayed Indians as red devils who launched unprovoked attacks on innocent homesteaders, Brown's research shows that the opposite is closer to the truth. The text is buttressed with numerous period photos. An essential purchase. (LJ 12/15/70)
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Human tragedy, and greed, on an epic scale July 18 2010
This is a book that should make any human reader very angry and very sad. It is the history of the Western Native Americans (American in the strict sense of the word, not North American) and their encounters with "white" Americans. The book recounts the stories of numerous tribes and numerous chiefs, including: Sitting Bull, Cochise, Crazy Heart, Geronimo, and many others.

Sadly, the stories of all the bands follow a familiar, tragic plot.

1- Natives living free in their territory.
2- White people realize there's something of value (typically gold or silver) in that territory.
3- They want to build roads there.
4- The natives, wanting to avoid a fight, allow it.
5- White squatters, ranchers, miners, and land owners start illegally encroaching onto the native land. The US government does nothing about this illegal activity (at the Federal level- at the State and local levels, they often encourage it!).
6- The natives have had enough and drive out some squatters. The squatters then yell about crazy, dangerous Indians, calling for the US Army to come in.
7- They generally give the Natives a chance to sign a new, crappy, treaty that drastically reduces their land claims. Or they skip to #9 and tell them to move to a new reservation or be wiped out.
8- The US Army often massacres a village of natives (including the elderly, women, children, and yes, infants) to get the ball rolling.
9- The natives are then offered a new, really crappy piece of land that nobody (including them) wants.
10- Many natives, especially the young men, refuse that crappy deal. They fight back. They almost always lose. Other than Little Big Horn and a couple of other fights, the natives lack of good weapons (often bows vs.
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5.0 out of 5 stars wounded knee June 4 2014
By shorty
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
have not read this book yet but what i read of it so far seems to be interesting thank you
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read! March 7 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This was a gift for a family member. Very interesting read and very happy to have known the author and his works.
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5.0 out of 5 stars good read Aug. 15 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
it was in good condition and fast service.
It is a very moving and emotional book that captures the unjust and unfair suffering of a people and nation.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A MASTERPIECE - (photos speak too) July 7 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read 156 books last year, a mix of non fiction & memoir or autobiography mostly. I passed this cover a few times before finally deciding to read it .

I can't remember in recent years any book that affected me so profoundly. The book was written in 1971, sadly Dee Brown is no longer with us. But he has left us with an enormous gift - honouring those whose stories, need to be known & remembered in the way he imparted them. And do much much better than what we've done currently - however, that is not for me to preach.

Please read this book for your own sake -it is imo a masterpiece.

Fyi -if you read on kindle be sure to click on each photograph & zoom to full size & zoom. The Chiefs, esp are magnificent pics.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee April 17 2013
By judy
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a piece of History that a lot of people don't know about.
It's well written, captivating & timeless.
I recommend it to anyone interested in little known US history.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This book recounts the trials and tribulations that the indigenous people have gone through, and continues to go through to this day. Being of Native descent, I found it hard with the history lessons taught in schools. A little too one-sided? I think not. Remember, history is HIS story -- the Europeans' version of what truly happened centuries ago. It has taken too long for us to have our story told. The indigenous people were keepers of the land, and never claimed to own the land. We never had any concept of the value of gold. We lived with the land and were one with it. Was it right to drive them from their homes? To have hundreds of men, women and children die during their walk of the Trail of Tears? I clearly do not remember any of this being taught in history class. Do yourself a favor and buy this book. Read it with an open mind and heart and understand history as it truly was! It is not one-sided in any sense of the phrase. Being one-sided is not telling the whole truth!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good place to start to learn more Feb. 20 2003
I read this book way back in 1977 when I was a student. I'm half English and knew little of American History. It was a very profound read then and I felt an enormous amount of sympathy in reading it for a culture that was doomed by the arrival of Europeans. I have looked at some of the reviews and those that criticise it seem to dislike the one-sided approach that portray's Indians as Good and White man as Bad. To them I would point out that for a long time we have had the image of Indians as Bad thrust at us by movies and TV shows. I don't think I'm wrong in believing that there was already a stereotype that potrayed Indians as murderous savages, and that is from looking at it in England. So, I thinks it's ok to have something that discriminates so postively in favour of a race that was vilified at so many levels. However, nobody should rely on just one source as the whole story.
If you really care, you will read more than one book and find out as much as possible. I'm sure doing so will show that as with everything it is never a simplisitc black and white picture, there is always good and bad on sides and there is always something right and wrong in both too.
Whatever your views, I think it would be hard to deny that their culture and race was overwhelmed and almost completely destroyed by the immigration of Europeans. We will never know if the cultures could have co-existed peacefully and the fact they didn't probably proves they couldn't.
That doesn't make either side right or wrong. It does show that we find it easier to go to war with foreign cultures than embrace them and that has been a fact throughout history. It seems that in human relations one side has to be defeated and broken rather than respected and equal.
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