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The Vanishing American: White Attitudes and U. S. Indian Policy
     

The Vanishing American: White Attitudes and U. S. Indian Policy

by Brian W. Dippie
 

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Not long after the white man stepped ashore in North America he began killing Indians and pushing those that survived farther and farther west. And what of his conscience? Well, he invented a convenient explanation: Indians are a vanishing race, doomed to extinction anyway.

That belief not only persisted, writes historian Brian Dippie, but it also spread

Overview


Not long after the white man stepped ashore in North America he began killing Indians and pushing those that survived farther and farther west. And what of his conscience? Well, he invented a convenient explanation: Indians are a vanishing race, doomed to extinction anyway.

That belief not only persisted, writes historian Brian Dippie, but it also spread throughout American culture. Soon the "vanishing Indian" appeared in science, literature, art, popular culture, and, most importantly, federal policy.

"The assumption that the Indians are a vanishing race has about it the quality of self-fulfilling prophecy," Dippie writes. In this classic study, first published in 1982, he traces the origins of this assumption and documents its insidious effects on U.S. policy toward Indians from the beginning of the nation's history through the Indian New Deal of the 1930s. He describes its role in early attempts at civilization and education, segregation of Indians west of the Mississippi, post-Civil War reform, the Dawes Act and allotment, the gradualism of early twentieth-century policy, the reform movement of the 1920s, John Collier's Indian Reorganization Act, and into the 1970s.

Editorial Reviews

American Historical Review
A remarkably fine book. Enlightening and delightful.
American Indian Quarterly
Totally absorbing.
Pacific Historian
A model study in the history of American ideas. A distinguished contribution to American History.
Canadian Review of American Studies
The best study of American cultural attitudes regarding the Indian produced to date. Written in a clear and enjoyable style.
Pacific Historical Review
Should be on the reading list of every course on the history of the American Indian.
Books of the Southwest
Deserves a place on the shelves of anyone concerned with the status of Indians today.
Booknews
Reprint of the respected Wesleyan University Press edition of 1982. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780700605071
Publisher:
University Press of Kansas
Publication date:
10/28/1991
Edition description:
REPRINT
Pages:
446
Product dimensions:
6.11(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.91(d)

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