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The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee

David Treuer

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Corsair
07 May 2020
FINALIST FOR THE 2019 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD CHOSEN BY BARACK OBAMA AS ONE OF HIS FAVOURITE BOOKS OF 2019 LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 ANDREW CARNEGIE MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER 'An informed, moving and kaleidoscopic portrait... Treuer's powerful book suggests the need for soul-searching about the meanings of American history and the stories we tell ourselves about this nation's past' New York Times Book Review, front page The received idea of Native American history has been that American Indian history essentially ended with the 1890 massacre at Wounded Knee. Not only did one hundred fifty Sioux die at the hands of the U.S. Cavalry, the sense was, but Native civilization did as well. Growing up Ojibwe on a reservation in Minnesota, training as an anthropologist, and researching Native life past and present for his nonfiction and novels, David Treuer has uncovered a different narrative. Because they did not disappear - and not despite but rather because of their intense struggles to preserve their language, their traditions, their families, and their very existence- the story of American Indians since the end of the nineteenth century to the present is one of unprecedented resourcefulness and reinvention. In THE HEARTBEAT OF WOUNDED KNEE, Treuer melds history with reportage and memoir. Tracing the tribes' distinctive cultures from first contact, he explores how the depredations of each era spawned new modes of survival. The devastating seizures of land gave rise to increasingly sophisticated legal and political maneuvering that put the lie to the myth that Indians don't know or care about property. The forced assimilation of their children at government-run boarding schools incubated a unifying Native identity. Conscription in the US military and the pull of urban life brought Indians into the mainstream and modern times, even as it steered the emerging shape of self-rule and spawned a new generation of resistance. THE HEARTBEAT OF WOUNDED KNEE is the essential, intimate story of a resilient people in a transformative era.
By:   David Treuer
Imprint:   Corsair
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 214mm,  Width: 134mm,  Spine: 42mm
Weight:   500g
ISBN:   9781472154941
ISBN 10:   1472154940
Pages:   528
Publication Date:   07 May 2020
Audience:   General/trade ,  College/higher education ,  Professional and scholarly ,  ELT Advanced ,  Primary
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

David Treuer is Ojibwe from the Leech Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota. The author of four previous novels, most recently Prudence, and two books of nonfiction, he has also written for The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Esquire, Slate, and The Washington Post, among others. He has a Ph.D. in anthropology and teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Southern California.

Reviews for The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee

An informed, moving and kaleidoscopic portrait... Treuer's powerful book suggests the need for soul-searching about the meanings of American history and the stories we tell ourselves about this nation's past. - New York Times Book Review, front page If you enjoyed There There by Tommy Orange, read The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee Treuer's forthcoming counternarrative blends memoir - a retelling of his own family and tribe's experiences - and in-depth, detailed reporting on 125 years of native history. - Washington Post Sweeping, essential history...Treuer's storytelling skills shine...[an] elegant handling of [a] complex narrative - The Economist In a marvel of research and storytelling, an Ojibwe writer traces the dawning of a new resistance movement born of deep pride and a reverence for tradition. Treuer's chronicle of rebellion and resilience is a manifesto and rallying cry. - O, The Oprah Magazine A sweeping history of Native American life from the Wounded Knee massacre to the present-disputing the commonly held belief that the infamous 1890 massacre destroyed the Native American population and spirit. Treuer, whose mother is an Ojibwe Indian and who grew up on the reservation before leaving to attend Princeton, presents a more nuanced and hopeful vision of the past and future of Native Americans - Vanity Fair The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee is the essential, intimate story of a resilient people in a transformative era. - The Rumpus Chapter after chapter, it's like one shattered myth after another - NPR


  • Short-listed for LA Times Book Prize 2020 (UK)
  • Short-listed for National Book Awards for Non-Fiction 2019 (UK)

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