• If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • You already know Dokkio is an AI-powered assistant to organize & manage your digital files & messages. Very soon, Dokkio will support Outlook as well as One Drive. Check it out today!


Week 7

Page history last edited by mwitgen@... 4 years ago



Confronting New Powers in Eastern North America


October 15: Fall Study Break


October 17: The Iconography of the American Indian in the Early Republic



The readings for this class are a mix of fiction, poetry, history (Parkman), and biography (Drake) from the nineteenth century. While reading, pay attention to dates and consider that many of these authors wrote after the U.S. government implemented Andrew Jackson's removal policies and during a period when more and more American Indians were being forced to live on reservations. 


If you are unfamiliar with some of the individuals mentioned in the text, look them up. Pontiac, for example, was an Odawa war leader who led allied Great Lakes Indians against the British in 1763 and he led a siege against Fort Detroit. Tecumseh was a Shawnee who is known for uniting Ohio Valley and Great Lakes Native peoples against the United States, especially in the War of 1812 when he sided with the British. He was part of a larger Nativist religious movement, as was his brother, the prophet Tenskwatawa. While we are focusing on representations of these men, it is also important to understand who they were and their actions.








Study Questions


  1. Consider Parkman, Drake, Mair, and Schoolcraft--How are their depictions of Pontiac and Tecumseh connected? Who were these two Indian men and what did they symbolize to nineteenth-century writers? What did their deaths represent? Why do you think nineteenth-century writers, like Parkman, shift back and forth from a tone of admiration to one of disdain for individuals like Pontiac and Tecumseh?
  2.  How do Parkman and Drake depict Pontiac and Tecumseh in comparison to other Indians? Pay attention to how they use the term race.
  3.  When reading, note some of the key words that are repeated throughout many of these texts, such as liberty, freedom, and slaves. How might these words resonate with nineteenth-century readers?  
  4.  To better understand the ideology of the vanishing Indian, compare the endings from The Last of the Mohicans, The Song of HiawathaLogan's death speech, Tecumseh's death in Mair's drama, and the ending of The Conspiracy of Pontiac (262-273). What do these endings have in common? What type of imagery do the authors use to emphasize the ideology of the vanishing Indian? What place did American Indians have in the Early Republic? How do these excerpts depict westward expansion and how might this ideology be connected to government policies and actions? How are these writings part of the discourse of savagery (or barbarism) and civilization?


Comments (0)

You don't have permission to comment on this page.