The Demon of the Continent: Indians and the Shaping of American Literature

Paperback (Print)
Buy Used
Buy Used from BN.com
$16.17
(Save 41%)
Item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging.
Condition: Used – Good details
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $8.94
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 67%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (14) from $8.94   
  • New (2) from $22.89   
  • Used (12) from $8.94   

Overview

The Demon of the Continent
Indians and the Shaping of American Literature
Joshua David Bellin

"This work will join such studies as Toni Morrison's Playing in the Dark, Eric Sundquist's To Wake the Nations, and Lucy Maddox's Removals. It is a thoughtful, engaging study."--Priscilla Wald, Duke University

"Bellin not only proposes a major and fundamentally new reading of American literature itself, he also writes beautifully."--Barry F. O'Connell, Amherst College

In recent years, the study and teaching of Native American oral and written art have flourished. During the same period, there has been a growing recognition among historians, anthropologists, and ethnohistorians that Indians must be seen not as the voiceless, nameless, faceless Other but as people who had a powerful impact on the historical development of the United States. Literary critics, however, have continued to overlook Indians as determinants of American--rather than specifically Native American--literature. The notion that the presence of Indian peoples shaped American literature as a whole remains unexplored.

In The Demon of the Continent, Joshua David Bellin probes the complex interrelationships among Native American and Euro-American cultures and literatures from the mid-seventeenth to the mid-nineteenth centuries. He asserts that cultural contact is at the heart of American literature. For Bellin, previous studies of Indians in American literature have focused largely on the images Euro-American writers constructed of indigenous peoples, and have thereby only perpetuated those images. Unlike authors of those earlier studies, Bellin refuses to reduce Indians to static antagonists or fodder for a Euro-American imagination.

Drawing on works such as Henry David Thoreau's Walden, William Apess' A Son of the Forest, and little known works such as colonial Indian conversion narratives, he explores the ways in which these texts reflect and shape the intercultural world from which they arose. In doing so, Bellin reaches surprising conclusions: that Walden addresses economic clashes and partnerships between Indians and whites; that William Bartram's Travels encodes competing and interpenetrating systems of Indian and white landholding; that Catherine Sedgwick's Hope Leslie enacts the antebellum drama of Indian conversion; that James Fenimore Cooper and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow struggled with Indian authors such as George Copway and David Cusick for physical, ideological, and literary control of the nation.

The Demon of the Continent proves Indians to be actors in the dynamic processes in which America and its literature are inescapably embedded. Shifting the focus from textual images to the sites of material, ideological, linguistic, and aesthetic interaction between peoples, Bellin reenvisions American literature as the product of contact, conflict, accommodation, and interchange.

Joshua David Bellin is a member of the faculty of La Roche College.

2000 | 280 pages | 6 x 9
ISBN 978-0-8122-3570-8 | Cloth | $59.95s | £39.00
ISBN 978-0-8122-1748-3 | Paper | $27.50s | £18.00
World Rights | Literature, Native American Studies, Cultural Studies

Short copy:

American literature has been deeply shaped by the presence of American Indians.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This work will join such studies as Toni Morrison's Playing in the Dark, Eric Sundquist's To Wake the Nations, and Lucy Maddox's Removals. It is a thoughtful, engaging study."—Priscilla Wald, Duke University

"Bellin not only proposes a major and fundamentally new reading of American literature itself, he also writes beautifully."—Barry F. O'Connell, Amherst College

Booknews
Bellin (La Roche College) examines the complex interrelationships among Native American and Euro-American cultures and literatures from the mid-17th to the mid-19th centuries, arguing that the presence of Indian peoples in the United States has profoundly shaped American literature<-->not only the texts that overtly engage this presence, but the whole body of literature produced in a nation itself created by this encounter<-->and that this presence must be reckoned with in our reading and teaching of the literature. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812217483
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/28/2000
  • Series: Literature/Cultural Studies Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.64 (d)

Meet the Author

Joshua David Bellin is a member of the faculty of La Roche College.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1. Indian Conversions 14
2. The Charm of the Indian 39
3. Radical Faiths 71
Interlude 98
4. Stories of the Land 106
5. Mind out of Time 131
6. Myth and the State 154
7. Traditional Histories 183
Conclusion 208
Notes 211
Index 259
Acknowledgments 273
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)