The Great Circle: A History of the First Nations

The Great Circle: A History of the First Nations

by Neil Philip
     
 


The Lakota holy man Black Elk often used the image of a circle or hoop when he spoke of the history of his people, stating that “the power of the World always works in circles, and everything tries to be round.” This chronicle of the principal Indian tribes in North America echoes that vision.

Folklorist Neil Philip examines the shared experience of

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Overview


The Lakota holy man Black Elk often used the image of a circle or hoop when he spoke of the history of his people, stating that “the power of the World always works in circles, and everything tries to be round.” This chronicle of the principal Indian tribes in North America echoes that vision.

Folklorist Neil Philip examines the shared experience of many of the First Nations, from their separate existences before whites arrived, to their years of struggle and heartbreak, to the present-day resurgence of their cultures. The attitudes of Native American leaders toward land, society, and spiritual matters are contrasted with those of their white contemporaries; photographs, personal testimony, eyewitness detail, and excerpts from speeches by leaders—including Native American chiefs and holy men, and white politicians and military officers—document the resulting cycles of misunderstanding and conflict based on differing world views.

Drawing on the records of both white Americans and First Nations peoples, Neil Philip has created a carefully researched, compact account of Native American history that focuses not only on past injustices but also on the positive outlook for the future. Source notes, bibliography, index.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"An enriching and eye-opening must-purchase." School Library Journal, Starred

"Solid research, an engaging writing style...fascinating." Booklist, ALA, Starred Review

"Useful as research material." Horn Book Guide

Children's Literature - Barbara Youngblood
The author has done extensive research to create this historical overview of Native Americans. He describes certain culture groups and the tribes within that group. His use of actual quotes from Native peoples, and photos and artwork depicting people in their native setting is extraordinary. The history of the interaction between Native Peoples and the white man's society are for the most part tragic. But the reader can see many instances where the white man did admire and use the ideas of the various tribes. This is certainly a book for high school students or adults. Not only does it give the reader some of the wonderful contributions made by Native Americans, it also tells of their sad treatment by the white man and their government. Modern attempts to right ancient wrongs are documented. The bibliography of major works has a chapter-by-chapter list. An index and a picture source list are included.
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Philip's well-balanced account begins with the clash between worldviews. European settlers came to North America with a doctrine of possession and dominance, of people over nature, and more technological society over less, while First Nations cultures view the Earth as a great wheel, with all people and animals joined together, all nature part of the connecting web. How the connectional perspective lost out to that of domination and rapaciousness, and how Native American tribes are reclaiming their cultural heritage, is the subject of this sensitively written, beautifully crafted work. Seven chapters cover general Native American history as well as the histories, cultures, and religions of several tribes, including the Seminole, the Modoc, the Lakota, and the Shawnee. Primary sources are incorporated into the narrative and extensively documented. Period photographs and reproductions are well placed, and their lengthy captions add to the information in the text. The picture that emerges is clear and sobering, at once desperately sad and cautiously uplifting, as various tribes begin the task of reclaiming their cultures and their environments. This exemplary resource extends Paul Robert Walker's Remember Little Bighorn (National Geographic, 2006) and prepares readers for a more adult work, Hyemeyohsts Storm's Seven Arrows (Ballantine, 1978). An enriching and eye-opening must-purchase.-Ann Welton, Helen B. Stafford Elementary, Tacoma, WA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618159413
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
08/14/2006
Pages:
153
Product dimensions:
7.50(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.74(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

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