Unpacks the twenty-one most common myths and misconceptions about Native Americans In this enlightening book, scholars and activists Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz and Dina Gilio-Whitaker tackle a wide range of myths about Native American culture and history that have misinformed generations. Tracing how these ideas evolved, and drawing from history, the authors disrupt long-held and enduring myths such as: "Columbus Discovered America" "Thanksgiving Proves the Indians Welcomed Pilgrims" "Indians Were Savage and Warlike" "Europeans Brought Civilization to Backward Indians" "The United States Did Not Have a Policy of Genocide" "Sports Mascots Honor Native Americans" "Most Indians Are on Government Welfare" "Indian Casinos Make Them All Rich" "Indians Are Naturally Predisposed to Alcohol" Each chapter deftly shows how these myths are rooted in the fears and prejudice of European settlers and in the larger political agendas of a settler state aimed at acquiring Indigenous land and tied to narratives of erasure and disappearance. Accessibly written and revelatory, "All the Real Indians Died Off" challenges readers to rethink what they have been taught about Native Americans and history.
2015 Recipient of the American Book Award The first history of the United States told from the perspective of indigenous peoples Today in the United States, there are more than five hundred federally recognized Indigenous nations comprising nearly three million people, descendants of the fifteen million Native people who once inhabited this land. The centuries-long genocidal program of the US settler-colonial regimen has largely been omitted from history. Now, for the first time, acclaimed historian and activist Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz offers a history of the United States told from the perspective of Indigenous peoples and reveals how Native Americans, for centuries, actively resisted expansion of the US empire. With growing support for movements such as the campaign to abolish Columbus Day and replace it with Indigenous Peoples' Day and the Dakota Access Pipeline protest led by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States is an essential resource providing historical threads that are crucial for understanding the present. In An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States, Dunbar-Ortiz adroitly challenges the founding myth of the United States and shows how policy against the Indigenous peoples was colonialist and designed to seize the territories of the original inhabitants, displacing or eliminating them. And as Dunbar-Ortiz reveals, this policy was praised in popular culture, through writers like James Fenimore Cooper and Walt Whitman, and in the highest offices of government and the military. Shockingly, as the genocidal policy reached its zenith under President Andrew Jackson, its ruthlessness was best articulated by US Army general Thomas S. Jesup, who, in 1836, wrote of the Seminoles: "The country can be rid of them only by exterminating them." Spanning more than four hundred years, this classic bottom-up peoples' history radically reframes US history and explodes the silences that have haunted our national narrative. An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States is a 2015 PEN Oakland-Josephine Miles Award for Excellence in Literature.
"If the moral issues raised by the Sioux people in the federal courtroom that cold month of December 1974 spark a recognition among the readers of a common destiny of humanity over and above the rules and regulations, the codes and statutes, and the power of the establishment to enforce its will, then the sacrifice of the Sioux people will not have been in vain."--Vine Deloria Jr. The Great Sioux Nation: Sitting in Judgment on America is the story of the Sioux Nation's fight to regain its land and sovereignty, highlighting the events of 1973-74, including the protest at Wounded Knee. It features pieces by some of the most prominent scholars and Indian activists of the twentieth century, including Vine Deloria Jr., Simon Ortiz, Dennis Banks, Father Peter J. Powell, Russell Means, Raymond DeMallie, and Henry Crow Dog. It also features primary documents and firsthand accounts of the activists' work and of the trial. New to this Bison Books edition is a foreword by Philip J. Deloria and an introduction by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz.
WINNER OF THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD IN NONFICTION Americans like to insist that we are living in a postracial, color-blind society. In fact, racist thought is alive and well; it has simply become more sophisticated and more insidious. And as award-winning historian Ibram X. Kendi argues in Stamped from the Beginning, racist ideas in this country have a long and lingering history, one in which nearly every great American thinker is complicit. In this deeply researched and fast-moving narrative, Kendi chronicles the entire story of anti-Black racist ideas and their staggering power over the course of American history. Stamped from the Beginning uses the lives of five major American intellectuals to offer a window into the contentious debates between assimilationists and segregationists and between racists and antiracists. From Puritan minister Cotton Mather to Thomas Jefferson, from fiery abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison to brilliant scholar W. E. B. Du Bois to legendary anti-prison activist Angela Davis, Kendi shows how and why some of our leading proslavery and pro-civil rights thinkers have challenged or helped cement racist ideas in America. As Kendi provocatively illustrates, racist thinking did not arise from ignorance or hatred. Racist ideas were created and popularized in an effort to defend deeply entrenched discriminatory policies and to rationalize the nation's racial inequities in everything from wealth to health. While racist ideas are easily produced and easily consumed, they can also be discredited. In shedding much-needed light on the murky history of racist ideas, Stamped from the Beginning offers us the tools we need to expose them-and in the process, gives us reason to hope.
This book provides the first national study of this intense and challenging struggle which disrupted and refashioned institutions in almost every state. It also illuminates the context for one of the most transformative educational movements in American history through a history of black higher education and black student activism before 1965.
Between the 1950s and 1970s, Black Power coalesced as activists advocated a more oppositional approach to fighting racial oppression, emphasizing racial pride, asserting black political, cultural, and economic autonomy, and challenging white power. In Concrete Demands, Rhonda Y. Williams provides a rich, deeply researched history that sheds new light on this important social and political movement, and shows that the era of expansive Black Power politics that emerged in the 1960s had long roots and diverse trajectories within the 20th century. Looking at the struggle from the grassroots level, Williams highlights the role of ordinary people as well as more famous historical actors, and demonstrates that women activists were central to Black Power. Vivid and highly readable, Concrete Demands is a perfect introduction to Black Power in the twentieth century for anyone interested in the history of black liberation movements.
Black women have traditionally represented the canvas on which many debates about poverty and welfare have been drawn. For a quarter century after the publication of the notorious Moynihan report, poor black women were tarred with the same brush: "ghetto moms" or "welfare queens" living offthe state, with little ambition or hope of an independent future. At the same time, the history of the civil rights movement has all too often succumbed to an idolatry that stresses the centrality of prominent leaders while overlooking those who fought daily for their survival in an often hostileurban landscape. In this collective biography, Rhonda Y. Williams takes us behind, and beyond, politically expedient labels to provide an incisive and intimate portrait of poor black women in urban America. Drawing on dozens of interviews, Williams challenges the notion that low-income housing was a resoundingfailure that doomed three consecutive generations of post-war Americans to entrenched poverty. Instead, she recovers a history of grass-roots activism, of political awakening, and of class mobility, all facilitated by the creation of affordable public housing. The stereotyping of black women,especially mothers, has obscured a complicated and nuanced reality too often warped by the political agendas of both the left and the right, and has prevented an accurate understanding of the successes and failures of government anti-poverty policy. At long last giving human form to a community of women who have too often been treated as faceless pawns in policy debates, Rhonda Y. Williams offers an unusually balanced and personal account of the urban war on poverty from the perspective of those who fought, and lived, it daily.
A WASHINGTON POST BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR Based on an unprecedented eighteen-year study, the center of this riveting book are three engaging streetwise brothers who provide powerful testimony to the exigencies of life lived on the social and economic margins. With profound lessons regarding the intersection of social forces and individual choices, Black succeeds in putting a human face on some of the most important public policy issues of our time.
In 2013, New York City launched a public education campaign with posters of frowning or crying children saying such things as "I'm twice as likely not to graduate high school because you had me as a teen" and "Honestly, Mom, chances are he won't stay with you." Campaigns like this support a public narrative that portrays teen mothers as threatening the moral order, bankrupting state coffers, and causing high rates of poverty, incarceration, and school dropout. These efforts demonize teen mothers but tell us nothing about their lives before they became pregnant. In this myth-shattering book, the authors tell the life stories of 108 brown, white, and black teen mothers, exposing the problems in their lives often overlooked in pregnancy prevention campaigns. Some stories are tragic and painful, marked by sexual abuse, partner violence, and school failure. Others depict "girl next door" characters whose unintended pregnancies lay bare insidious gender disparities. Offering a fresh perspective on the links between teen births and social inequalities, this book demonstrates how the intersecting hierarchies of gender, race, and class shape the biographies of young mothers.
How do you help young children learn more about Native Americans than the cultural stereotypes found in children's books and in the media? Lessons from Turtle Island is the first complete guide to exploring Native American issues with children. The authors--one Native, one white, both educators--show ways to incorporate authentic learning experiences about Native Americans into your curriculum. This book is organized around five cross-cultural themes--Children, Home, Families, Community, and the Environment. The authors present activities, from children's books they recommend, to develop skills in reading and writing, science, math, make-believe, art, and more. The book provides helpful guidelines and resource lists for selecting appropriate toys, children's books, music, and art, and also includes a family heritage project. "[A] marvelous tool that should be in every American school."--Joseph Bruchac, author of Heart of a Chief and The Winter People Guy W. Jones, Hunkpapa Lakota, is a full-blood member of the Standing Rock Sioux Nation. He is a co-founder of the Miami Valley Council for Native Americans in Dayton, Ohio. Sally Moomaw teaches at the University of Cincinnati. She is the co-author of the More Than . . . curriculum series published by Redleaf Press.