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9780807057834

An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780807057834

  • ISBN10:

    0807057835

  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Trade Paper
  • Copyright: 2015-08-11
  • Publisher: Beacon Press

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Summary

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.

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.

Author Biography

Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz grew up in rural Oklahoma, the daughter of a tenant farmer and part-Indian mother. She has been active in the international Indigenous movement for more than four decades and is known for her lifelong commitment to national and international social justice issues. After receiving her PhD in history at the University of California at Los Angeles, she taught in the newly established Native American Studies Program at California State University, Hayward, and helped found the Departments of Ethnic Studies and Women’s Studies. Her 1977 book The Great Sioux Nation was the fundamental document at the first international conference on Indigenous peoples of the Americas, held at the United Nations’ headquarters in Geneva. Dunbar-Ortiz is the author or editor of seven other books, including Roots of Resistance: A History of Land Tenure in New Mexico. She lives in San Francisco.

Table of Contents

Author's Note

Introduction: This Land

One: Follow the Corn

Two: Culture of Conquest

Three: Cult of the Covenant

Four: Bloody Footprints

Five: Birth of a Nation

Six: The Last of the Mohicans and Andrew Jackson’s White Republic

Seven: Sea to Shining Sea

Eight: “Indian Country”

Nine: US Triumphalism and Peacetime Colonialism

Ten: Ghost Dance Prophesy: A Nation is Coming

Eleven: The Doctrine of Discovery

Conclusion: The Future of the United States

Acknowledgments

Suggested Reading

Notes

Works Cited

Index

Rewards Program

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