Genocide of the Mind (Native American Studies Series): New Native American Writing


After five centuries of Eurocentrism, many people have little idea that Native American tribes still exist, or which traditions belong to what tribes. However over the past decade there has been a rising movement to accurately describe Native cultures and histories. In particular, people have begun to explore the experience of urban Indians—individuals who live in two worlds struggling to preserve traditional Native values within the context of an ever-changing modern society. In Genocide of the Mind, the ...

See more details below
$12.70 price
(Save 29%)$18.00 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (19) from $1.99   
  • New (11) from $7.96   
  • Used (8) from $1.99   
Sending request ...


After five centuries of Eurocentrism, many people have little idea that Native American tribes still exist, or which traditions belong to what tribes. However over the past decade there has been a rising movement to accurately describe Native cultures and histories. In particular, people have begun to explore the experience of urban Indians—individuals who live in two worlds struggling to preserve traditional Native values within the context of an ever-changing modern society. In Genocide of the Mind, the experience and determination of these people is recorded in a revealing and compelling collection of essays that brings the Native American experience into the twenty-first century. Contributors include: Paula Gunn Allen, Simon Ortiz, Sherman Alexie, Leslie Marmon Silko, and Maurice Kenny, as well as emerging writers from different Indian nations.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

In a collection of essays and poems, 35 writers from more than 25 tribes bring today's issues of Native American identity to the fore. The articulate compositions deal with thorny matters. Residence in the cities or on reservations shape those who choose one or the other and distress those who move back and forth between the two. Persons of mixed blood struggle to figure out where they belong. Government laws, treaties, agreements, policies, and court decisions touch Indian lives in the US and in Canada and continue to be a source of irritation. Indians search within Christian churches and Native spirituality traditions to find fulfilling faith. Issues of poverty, alcoholism, and unemployment continue to rankle. Education is often seen as something that pulls students away from their heritage. Conflicts continue within families and among tribal and regional groups. Tribes oppose the use of Indian mascots by non-Indians because they believe the larger culture is appropriating symbols to which they have no right. They observe that many Americans in the larger culture view Indians as people of the past and often seem to revere them in a mythological sense more than they care about them as living human beings. According to these authors, much effort in the Indian community goes into recovering culture and identity and to fighting the bad things that come so readily to mind. Some writers urge their fellows to focus less on assigning blame for negatives and more on how to enrich their lives through restoring traditional culture. Indian schools help identity by including language and cultural elements in their curriculum; education can be positive when used as a path to improvements of allkinds. Indian groups and individuals have learned to make use of storytelling, singing, poetry, language learning (including the sound recording of oral language), family connections, and gatherings such as pow wows. Some have learned to use technology and to work within institutions to further the Indian cause and image. Though all the writers have some sense of dislocation they find troubling, their excellent, readable essays also reflect pride in a rich culture waiting to be reclaimed more fully. They look forward to how the future can be made better. Many tell of experiencing richer lives when they reconnect with their roots. The harshness of the title is unfortunate because there is a lot that is positive in the book. Older teen readers, university students, and adults will appreciate these frank, contemporary pieces of writing. KLIATT Codes: SA-Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2003, Thunder's Mouth Press, 352p., Ages 15 to adult.
— Edna Boardman
Library Journal
Moore, a Cherokee whose works include Spirit Voices of Bones, describes this anthology as "a testament to American Indian consciousness continuing to circulate, regardless of past or present genocidal attempts, whether cerebral, endemic, systematic, or otherwise." The book is divided into five sections-"Keeping the Home Fires Burning in Urban Circles," "American Indian Youth: The Need To Reclaim Identity," "Native Languages: Where Will They Go From Here?" "Indians as Mascots: An Issue To Be Resolved," and "Who We Are, Who We Are Not: Memories, Misconceptions and Modifications." The 33 essays are a stark and direct rendering of the Indian experience in this century and the way it is shaped by whites. For example, in "Invisible Emblems: Empty Words, and Sacred Honor," Steve Russell writes, "From Indian mascots to the Nuager Clan of the Great Wanabi Nation, the yonega (whites) are fascinated with connecting to Indians, Indians understood in some bizarre sense that escapes most of us." The contributors are from different Indian nations and include both well-known and emerging writers. Recommended for all libraries with Native American collections.-Sue Samson, Univ. of Montana, Missoula Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781560255116
  • Publisher: Nation Books
  • Publication date: 11/28/2003
  • Series: Nation Books
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 590,465
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Keeping the Home Fires Burning in Urban Circles
To Carry the Fire Home 3
Blood Flowing in Two Worlds 13
Home: Urban and Reservation 21
Indian in a Strange Land 29
Everyone Needs Someone 39
Unci (Grandmother) 49
From Brooklyn to the Reservation: Five Poems 57
2 Young American Indians: The Need to Reclaim Identity
The Genocide of a Generation's Identity 65
We, The People: Young American Indians Reclaiming Their Indentity 77
Indians in the Attic 85
America's Urban Youth and the Importance of Remembering 93
3 Native Languages: Where will they Go from Here?
Song, Poetry, and Language - Expression and Perception 105
X. Alatsep (written down) 119
Don't Talk, Don't Live 141
Iah Enionkwatewennahton'Se': We Will Not Lose Our Words 149
The Spirit of Language 159
A Different Rhythm 167
Names By Which the Spirits Know Us 177
4 Indians as Mascots: An Issue to Be Resolved
Symbolic Racism, History, and Reality: The Real Problem with Indian Mascots 187
Indian As Mascots: Perpetuating the Stereotype 199
Invisible Emblems: Empty Words and Sacred Honor 211
5 Who we Are, Who we are Not: Memories, Misconceptions, and Modifications
Yellow Woman and a Beauty of the Spirit 231
She's Nothing Like We Thought 243
Manitowac: Spirit Place in Anishinaabe 251
Pyramids, Art, Museum, and Bones: Some Brief Memories 257
Identification Pleas 269
Raising the American Indian Community House 281
The Secret of Breathing 291
The Indians Are Alive 297
"Indians," Solipsisms, and Archetypal Holocausts 305
Buffalo Medicine: An Essay and a Play 317
Postcolonial Hyperbaggage: A Few Poems of Resistance and Survival 327
About American Indian Artists, Inc. 337
Contributors 341
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

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

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & 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 & 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 & 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 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


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & 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 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
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2004

    excellent read

    Thought provoking at the least. Althought I may not agree with all the essays, I came away with something from each. The most profound thing for me was I no longer felt alone. Being of Mohawk descent, and living with parents and grandparents who tried to deny their heritage, I came away understanding more of why they were that way but also knowing that I am not alone in the feeling of missing something. I would recommend it to anyone with an interest in finding them selves and for all to realize that the native american culture is alive.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

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