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Other titles in the Emil and Kathleen Sick Lecture-Book Series in Western History and Biography series:
Shadow Tribe: The Making of Columbia River Indian Identity (Emil and Kathleen Sick Lecture-Book Series in Western History and Biography)by Andrew H Fisher
Synopses & Reviews
Shadow Tribe offers the first in-depth history of the Pacific Northwest's Columbia River Indians — the defiant River People whose ancestors refused to settle on the reservations established for them in central Oregon and Washington. Largely overlooked in traditional accounts of tribal dispossession and confinement, their story illuminates the persistence of off-reservation Native communities and the fluidity of their identities over time. Cast in the imperfect light of federal policy and dimly perceived by non-Indian eyes, the flickering presence of the Columbia River Indians has followed the treaty tribes down the difficult path marked out by the forces of American colonization.--Based on more than a decade of archival research and conversations with Native people, Andrew Fisher's groundbreaking book traces the waxing and waning of Columbia River Indian identity from the mid-nineteenth through the late twentieth centuries. Fisher explains how, despite policies designed to destroy them, the shared experience of being off the reservation and at odds with recognized tribes forged far-flung river communities into a loose confederation called the Columbia River Tribe. Environmental changes and political pressures eroded their autonomy during the second half of the twentieth century, yet many River People continued to honor a common heritage of ancestral connection to the Columbia, resistance to the reservation system, devotion to cultural traditions, and detachment from the institutions of federal control and tribal governance. At times, their independent and uncompromising attitude has challenged the sovereignty of the recognized tribes, earning Columbia River Indians a reputation as radicals and troublemakers even among their own people.--Shadow Tribe is part of a new wave of historical scholarship that shows Native American identities to be socially constructed, layered, and contested rather than fixed, singular, and unchanging. From his vantage point on the Columbia, Fisher has written a pioneering study that uses regional history to broaden our understanding of how Indians thwarted efforts to confine and define their existence within narrow reservation boundaries.--Andrew H. Fisher is assistant professor of history at the College of William and Mary.--"Andrew Fisher has written a superb book that tells a story of near-forgotten Indians who refused to move to the reservations and continued to live a traditional life along their beloved Columbia River. The dramatic story of their survival from the nineteenth deep into the twentieth centuries is a moving narrative that is both authentic and colorful." -Clifford Trafzer, University of California Riverside--"Shadow Tribe focuses on Indian communities that remained and evolved within important historic areas not on the reservations, in which the communities' complicated relationship with the Indian peoples on the reservations is as much a part of the story as the engagement with non-Indian society outside of the reservations." -John Shurts, author of Indian Reserved Water Rights-
Book News Annotation:
Those who self-identify as Columbia River Indians constitute a "shadow tribe" in that they are both part of and separate from federally recognized tribal bodies and frequently find their interests alternately aligning and conflicting with treaty tribal groups. Fisher (history, College of William and Mary) describes the formation of Columbia River Indian identity, showing how Columbia River Indian began as an administrative appellation for the ethnically diverse people who refused to leave and adopt treaty roles and how, through a process of negotiation and sometimes conflict with other Indians and non-Indians, that identity came to be fixed as a distinct tribal consciousness. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
European enslavement of American Indians began with Christopher Columbusand#8217;s arrival in the New World. The slave trade expanded with European colonies, and though African slave labor filled many needs, huge numbers of Americaand#8217;s indigenous peoples continued to be captured and forced to work as slaves. Although central to the process of colony building in what became the United States, this phenomena has received scant attention from historians.
Indian Slavery in Colonial America, edited by Alan Gallay, examines the complicated dynamics of Indian enslavement. How and why Indians became both slaves of the Europeans and suppliers of slaveryand#8217;s victims is the subject of this book. The essays in this collection use Indian slavery as a lens through which to explore both Indian and European societies and their interactions, as well as relations between and among Native groups.
In the second half of the nineteenth century, the Euro-American citizenry of California carried out mass genocide against the Native population of their state, using the processes and mechanisms of democracy to secure land and resources for themselves and their private interests. The murder, rape, and enslavement of thousands of Native people were legitimized by notions of democracyand#8212;in this case mob ruleand#8212;through a discreetly organized and brutally effective series of petitions, referenda, town hall meetings, and votes at every level of California government.
Murder State is a comprehensive examination of these events and their early legacy. Preconceptions about Native Americans as shaped by the popular press and by immigrantsand#8217; experiences on the Overland Trail to California were used to further justify the elimination of Native people in the newcomersand#8217; quest for land. The allegedly and#8220;violent natureand#8221; of Native people was often merely their reaction to the atrocities committed against them as they were driven from their ancestral lands and alienated from their traditional resources.
In this narrative history employing numerous primary sources and the latest interdisciplinary scholarship on genocide, Brendan C. Lindsay examines the darker side of California history, one rarely studied in detail, and the motives of both Native Americans and Euro-Americans at the time. Murder State calls attention to the misuse of democracy to justify and commit genocide.
About the Author
Steven C. Hahn is a professor of history at St. Olaf College. He is the author of The Life and Times of Mary Musgrove.
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History and Social Science » Native American » General Native American Studies