The American Indian Occupation of Alcatraz Island: Red Power and Self-Determination

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Overview

The occupation of Alcatraz Island by American Indians from November 20, 1969, through June 11, 1971, focused the attention of the world on Native Americans and helped develop pan-Indian activism. In this detailed examination of the takeover, Troy R. Johnson tells the story of those who organized the occupation and those who participated, some by living on the island and others by soliciting donations of money, food, water, clothing, and other necessities.
Johnson documents the unrest in the Bay Area urban Indian population that helped spur the takeover and draws on interviews with those involved to describe everyday life on Alcatraz during the nineteen-month occupation. In describing the federal government’s reactions as Americans rallied in support of the Indians, he turns to federal government archives and Nixon administration files. The book is a must-read for historians and others interested in the civil rights era, Native American history, and contemporary American Indian issues.
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Editorial Reviews

Choice
“This important study of late-20th-century Indian issues is suitable for undergraduate and graduate students, and general readers.”—Choice
American Indian Quarterly

“Johnson presents a fine narrative that is both fresh and authoritative.”—American Indian Quarterly

— Brad Lookingbill

Professional Geographer

“Johnson provides an interesting and comprehensive account of the social and political context for the occupation, of the motivations and political aspirations of the occupiers, of daily life on Alcatraz during the occupation, of the U.S. government’s strategy to end the occupation, and the reasons for the eventual end of the occupation.”—Professional Geographer

— Steven E. Silvern

American Indian Quarterly - Brad Lookingbill
“Johnson presents a fine narrative that is both fresh and authoritative.”—American Indian Quarterly
Professional Geographer - Steven E. Silvern
“Johnson provides an interesting and comprehensive account of the social and political context for the occupation, of the motivations and political aspirations of the occupiers, of daily life on Alcatraz during the occupation, of the U.S. government’s strategy to end the occupation, and the reasons for the eventual end of the occupation.”—Professional Geographer
Choice

“This important study of late-20th-century Indian issues is suitable for undergraduate and graduate students, and general readers.”—Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803217799
  • Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 312
  • Sales rank: 1,004,202
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Troy R. Johnson is a professor of history and American Indian studies at California State University, Long Beach. He is the author and editor of several books, including Red Power: The American Indians’ Fight for Freedom (available in a Bison Books edition) and Contemporary Native American Political Issues.
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