WHAT ARE YOU READING?
Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West
by Dee Brown
This is the last chapter in the story of the making of the United States. This is when the push westward became serious and unstoppable. There was land, there was gold, there was a railroad that crossed the continent, there was a lot of money to be made. And so America convinced itself that it had a ‘manifest destiny’ to all the land between the east coast and the west. A ‘manifest destiny’ that justified removing the original inhabitants by any means necessary. 1860-1890 have been described as the years of broken promises, disillusion, war and massacre – though they certainly weren’t the only years that could be described like that. From the moment the first white man stepped onto the continent the Indians began to lose their land, their cultures, their freedom and their lives. But these were the years of the final, systematic and determined assault to solve ‘the Indian problem’ once and for all.
Starting with the Long Walk of the Navajos and ending with the slaughter of the Sioux at Wounded Knee, Dee Brown tells the story of the winning of the West from the point of view of the losers. Based on primary sources and first-hand accounts, this is a heart-breaking story with no happy ending. It’s not an easy read, but it should be a mandatory one for anyone who wants to understand America.
“Shattering, appalling, compelling...One wonders, reading this searing, heartbreaking book, who, indeed, were the savages.” —William McPherson, The Washington Post
“Extraordinarily powerful.” —Nat Hentoff
“Original, remarkable, and finally heartbreaking . . . Impossible to put down.” —The New York Times