Book Search:  

 

 
Google full text of our books:

bookjacket

The Insistence of the Indian:
Race and Nationalism in Nineteenth-Century American Culture
Susan Scheckel

Winner of the 1999 Book Award, South Central Modern Language Association

eBook | ISBN: 9781400822584 | Where to buy this ebook

Paperback | 1998 | This edition is out of print | ISBN: 9780691059648
Hardcover | 1998 | This edition is out of print | ISBN: 9780691059631

Endorsements

Americans' first attempts to forge a national identity coincided with the apparent need to define--and limit--the status and rights of Native Americans. During these early decades of the nineteenth century, the image of the "Indian" circulated throughout popular culture--in the novels of James Fenimore Cooper, plays about Pocahontas, Indian captivity narratives, Black Hawk's autobiography, and visitors' guides to the national capitol. In exploring such sources as well as the political and legal rhetoric of the time, Susan Scheckel argues that the "Indian question" was intertwined with the ways in which Americans viewed their nation's past and envisioned its destiny. She shows how the Indians provided a crucial site of reflection upon national identity. And yet the Indians, by being denied the natural rights upon which the constitutional principles of the United States rested, also challenged American convictions of moral ascendancy and national legitimacy.

Scheckel investigates, for example, the Supreme Court's decision on Indian land rights and James Fenimore Cooper's popular frontier romance The Pioneers: both attempted to legitimate American claims to land once owned by Indians and to assuage guilt associated with the violence of conquest by incorporating the Indians in a version of the American political "family." Alternatively, the widely performed Pocahontas plays dealt with the necessity of excluding Indians politically, but also portrayed these original inhabitants as embodying the potential of the continent itself. Such examples illustrate a gap between principles and practice. It is from this gap, according to the author, that the nation emerged, not as a coherent idea or a realist narrative, but as an ongoing performance that continues to play out, without resolution, fundamental ambivalences of American national identity.

Endorsement:

"An original work in terms of both the material it examines and the analyses it provides, Susan Scheckel's book will be an important contribution not only to our knowledge of the archives but also to our discussion of the broader cultural issues."--Cheryl Walker, author of Indian Nation: Native American Literature and Nineteenth-Century Nationalisms

Our eBook editions are available
from these online vendors:

  • Amazon Kindle Store
  • Barnes & Noble Nook Store
  • Google Play eBook Store
  • Kno eBook Store
  • Many of our ebooks are available to
    students & scholars through their libraries:

  • Books at JSTOR
  • Ebrary
  • Ebook Library
  • EBSCO Ebooks
  • MyiLibrary
  • Dawsonera (UK)

  • File created: 9/23/2014

    Questions and comments to: webmaster@press.princeton.edu
    Princeton University Press

    New Book E-mails
    New In Print
    PUP Blog
    Videos/Audios
    Princeton APPS
    Sample Chapters
    Subjects
    Series
    Catalogs
    Princeton Legacy Library
    Textbooks
    Media/Reviewers
    Class Use
    Rights/Permissions
    Ordering
    Recent Awards
    Princeton Shorts
    Freshman Reading
    PUP Europe
    About Us
    Contact Us
    Links
    F.A.Q.
    PUP Home


    Bookmark and Share
    Send me emails
    about new books in:
    American Literature
    Anthropology
    More Choices
    Email:
    Country:
    Name: