Most Helpful Customer Reviews
American Indian Almanac based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
It is a really good book if you can get past the constant harking of how terrible and horrible the white man was. After a while I started to laugh everytime I read it. The worse thing is that shortly after such statements he would go on to show how much worse the Indians were to each other, the sheer brutality at times making what whites did a non issue. He states that the book is mostly prehistoric but constantly crosses the line into historic times which I didn't mind because I like to have a fuller picture. Overall it is a decent book to have on hand but I think I will look for some others to compliment this one.
This book relies heavily on many of the classic, discredited racial tropes about Native Americans as "savages" and "war-like" people. This is probably because Terrell draws almost all of his information from the works of early European explorers and white historians from the 19th and early 20th centery, (many of whom have their own racial biases and cultural ignorance). While I'm not saying these perspectives should be ignored, they should also not be taken at face value. Terrell fails to do this. More importantly, there is virtually no Native American perspective here, which should be essential to any good history of American Indians. As such, a lot of the material in this book is pretty offensive.Scholarship in archeaology and Native American history have come a long way since the time when the Terrell's American Indian Almanac was published, in 1971. Any reader would do well to find a better book than this one.