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All Our Relations: Native Struggles for Land and Life by Winona LaDuke

1999; 241 pp. $16; South End Press

As a graduate student in the mid 1960s, I tried to teach Native-American history within the Anthropology Department at Harvard. They wouldn't accept a course that followed native peoples from earliest archeological evidence to 1960. To be ethnographers, we had to stop at the end of conquest, about 1870 to 1900. After that, Native Americans were considered too acculturated to be of interest. Instead, the Law School sponsored the class; of twenty students, fifteen were Native Americans. To put it mildly, I became the student.

This is the book I would have used had it existed thirty-five years ago. Eight portraits of Native-American peoples refusing to make distinctions among spirit, politics, land, and all life. A sense of faith and deep continuity on Turtle Island, our continent ravaged by invasion and time. Mohawk moms and PCBs; dams and the Nitassinan; Western Shosone and nuclear wastes; the Buffalo peoples and the loss of buffalo. No ragtag remnants of lost cultures here. Strong voices of old, old cultures bravely trying to make sense of an Earth in chaos.


ISBN: 0896085996

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