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In Native Roots, Jack Weatherford focuses on the vital role that Indian civilizations have played in the making of the United States. Conventional American history holds that the white settlers of the New World re-created the societies they had known in England, France, and Spain. As Weatherford shows, Europeans in fact grafted their civilization onto the deep and nourishing roots of Native American customs and beliefs. Weatherford argues that beneath the glass-and-steel skyscrapers of contemporary Manhattan lies an Indian fur-trading post; behind the tactics of modern guerrilla warfare are the lightning-fast maneuvers of the Plains Indians. Our place names, our farming and hunting techniques, our crafts–may derive from American Indians in ways we consistently fail to see.
“Well written, imagery-ridden.... A tale of what was, what became, and what is today regarding the Indian relation to the European civilization that ‘grafted’ itself onto this ‘ancient stern.’”–Minneapolis Star Tribune
“A comprehensive, memorable tribute.... Insightful and provocative.... Wonderfully accurate.”–Kirkus Reviews
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. The Road to Tuktoyaktuk; 2. Pyramids on the Mississippi; 3. Women (and a Few Men) Who Led the Way; 4. Firestorm; 5. The Tree in American History; 6. Hunting; 7. How the Fur Trade Shaped the American Economy; 8. Beads and Buildings; 9. Corn, Cotton, and Tobacco; 10. The Trade in Indian Slaves; 11. Fishing for Food and Profit; 12. Guerrillas and Warriors; 13. America’s Patron Saint; 14. Americanization of the English Language; 15. The Naming of North America; 16. North America’s Inca Historian; 17. Intellectual Mining; 18. Mixed-Blood Nation; 19. The White Roots of Peace; Bibliography; Acknowledgements; Index