The Great Sioux Nation

The Great Sioux Nation

Sitting in Judgment on America

Edited by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz
Foreword by Philip J. Deloria
With a new introduction by the editor

232 pages
21 photographs, 1 map

Paperback

May 2013

978-0-8032-4483-2

$21.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

“If the moral issues raised by the Sioux people in the federal courtroom that cold month of December 1974 spark a recognition among the readers of a common destiny of humanity over and above the rules and regulations, the codes and statutes, and the power of the establishment to enforce its will, then the sacrifice of the Sioux people will not have been in vain.”—Vine Deloria Jr.

The Great Sioux Nation: Sitting in Judgment on America is the story of the Sioux Nation’s fight to regain its land and sovereignty, highlighting the events of 1973–74, including the protest at Wounded Knee. It features pieces by some of the most prominent scholars and Indian activists of the twentieth century, including Vine Deloria Jr., Simon Ortiz, Dennis Banks, Father Peter J. Powell, Russell Means, Raymond DeMallie, and Henry Crow Dog. It also features primary documents and firsthand accounts of the activists’ work and of the trial.

New to this Bison Books edition is a foreword by Philip J. Deloria and an introduction by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz.

Author Bio

Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz is a historian and professor emerita of ethnic studies at California State University East Bay, and the author of several books, including Roots of Resistance: A History of Land Tenure in New Mexico and Indians of the Americas: Human Rights and Self-Determination. Philip J. Deloria, the son of Vine Deloria Jr., is the Carroll Smith-Rosenberg Collegiate Professor and an associate dean for undergraduate studies at the University of Michigan.

Praise

"The Great Sioux Nation transcends its time and place and speaks to the present as much as the past."—Amanda Lynch Morris, Journal of American Culture

“A delightful part of this volume is the extensive use of oral history of the Sioux which gives their version and understanding of the treaty of 1868. This will undoubtedly be a valuable source of information for future use. . . . In addition, the insights presented by the several writers about the importance of oral traditions among the Indian tribes will be useful to historians.”—Veronica E. Tiller, Pacific Historical Review

“This book records what the Sioux people, the scholars, and the attorneys for the Sioux attempted to bring to the attention of the federal courts, the administration of that year, and the American people concerning the nature and status of the Sioux Nation. . . . If the moral issues raised by the Sioux people in the federal courtroom that cold month of December 1974 spark a recognition among the readers of a common destiny of humanity over and above the rules and regulations, the codes and statutes, and the power of the establishment to enforce its will, then the sacrifice of the Sioux people will not have been in vain.”—Vine Deloria Jr.

“The oral history in this book represents some of the last documentation from the Lakota point of view, on the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty in these modern times. Almost all of the individuals quoted in the book have passed on and their oral history was only one generation removed from the actual Treaty signers. The entire hearing in front of Judge Urbom was a turning point in U.S. Law, as this was one of the few times in history where Lakota interpreters were used in U.S. Federal Court to express the meaning of the Fort Laramie Treaty from Lakota Peoples to the Judge and the Federal Court. Another highlight in this historic book was turning the words of the late Henry Crow Dog into poetry which made his wisdom understandable to future researchers, Indian and non-Indian.”—Bill Means, Lakota, co-founder, International Indian Treaty Council


 


Table of Contents

Introduction
THE TESTIMONY
Part One: Wounded Knee, 1890 and 1973
Part Two: The Sioux Nation Before Invasion
Part Three: Colonialism to 1868
Part Four: The Sioux-United States Treaty of 1868
Part Five: Lakota Oral History of the Treaty
Part Six: The Sioux Colony
Part Seven: From Victim to Victor
Conclusion: Sitting in Judgment on America
It Does Not End Here
Selected Bibliography

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