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That Dream Shall Have a Name

Native Americans Rewriting America

David L. Moore

Publication Year: 2014

The founding idea of “America” has been based largely on the expected sweeping away of Native Americans to make room for EuroAmericans and their cultures. In this authoritative study, David L. Moore examines the works of five well-known Native American writers and their efforts, since the nation’s early days, to redefine an “America” and “American identity” that includes Native Americans.   
That Dream Shall Have a Name focuses on the writing of Pequot Methodist minister William Apess in the 1830s; on Northern Paiute activist Sarah Winnemucca in the 1880s; on Salish/Métis novelist, historian, and activist D’Arcy McNickle in the 1930s; on Laguna poet and novelist Leslie Marmon Silko; and on Spokane poet, novelist, humorist, and filmmaker Sherman Alexie in the latter twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. 

Moore studies these five writers’ stories about the conflicted topics of sovereignty, community, identity, and authenticity—always tinged with irony and often with humor. He shows how Native Americans have tried from the beginning to shape an American narrative closer to its own ideals, one that does not include the death and destruction of their peoples. This compelling work offers keen insights into the relationships between Native and American identity and politics in a way that is both accessible to newcomers and compelling to those already familiar with these fields. 



Published by: University of Nebraska Press


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p. C-C

Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. i-viii


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pp. ix-x

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pp. xi-xvi

Over decades of trying to help college students of all backgrounds read Native American literatures, I gradually saw patterns in their questions. Thus I came to recognize fi ve areas of understanding necessary for listen-ing and responding to Native voices, and those fi ve areas form the circle and the center of this book. Collecting and addressing the underlying ques-...

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pp. xvii-xx

Since writing is a dialogue, I?m grateful for so many conversations that clari-fi ed living facets of this research. First of all, to my wife, Kate Shanley, the deepest, loving thanks. To our sons, Jay and Caleb, thanks for all your open-hearted support. To my father, Richard O. Moore, and my late mother, Elea-nor McKinney Sowande, I?m endlessly thankful, and I hope this text is worthy ...

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pp. 1-36

Around 1860 in what is now South Dakota, Wanatan, or Martin Charger, a young mixed-blood member of the Lakota Sioux nation, lived in the Indian village across the Missouri River from the old Ft. Pierre trading post. Char-ger, a member of the Two Kettles band, was reputed to be the grandson of Meriwether Lewis. According to one Two Kettle Lakota oral tradition, Lewis ...

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1. Knowing It Was to Come

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pp. 37-91

...?A boy had to have a good feeling about himself and about his people, or the fi re would go out of his life,? Bull muses on his grandson?s primary needs in D?Arcy McNickle?s Wind from an Enemy Sky (239). The brief phrase speaks to the complexity of reciprocal relations that is ?tribal sovereignty.? The Choctaw Cherokee scholar and novelist Louis Owens speaks to the link ...

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2. A Plethora of Animistic Factors Immersed in Ethereal Realities

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pp. 92-164

In scholarly eff orts at mapping Indigenous identity, from Owens to Vizenor to Cliff ord, the term community recurs as the ground of identity on which the map is laid. Louis Owens marks ?the recovering or rearticulation of an identity? as crucially ?dependent upon a rediscovered sense of place as well as community? (Other Destinies 5). Similarly Gerald Vizenor?s ?invitation ...

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3. The Soul of the Indian Is Immortal

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pp. 165-224

If the question of identity must involve the ever changing cycles of selfh ood and otherness, of interaction between the body and the world, those cycles may seem to represent broad enough categories for analysis of identity to extend in those terms across cultures. Yet immediately diff erent cultural meanings come into play among such categories and distinctions as self ...

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4. The Creative Ability of Indian People

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pp. 225-299

Understanding authenticity as translation is key to all the retranslated terms of this study and to the underlying irony of these slippery signifi ers. A fun-damental redefi nition of authenticity as dynamic translation underlines the transformative dynamic of each of the other redefi nitions. To negotiate identities between and within sovereign communities requires the author-...

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5. The Last Laugh

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pp. 300-364

Let?s start with universals and move quickly to the particulars of Native 1. Generally, and mysteriously, humor ?happens? through a structural reversal, a surprise. The unexpected quip or act or juxtaposition sets up irony, the incommensurability of language and reality, a mismatch of what is said and what is meant. A pun links incongruous categories. ...

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pp. 365-378

Will Simon Ortiz?s vision ever happen? Will America ever ?be America again,? as Langston Hughes asked? Will America even approximate its own ideals? Will the joke on history play out? Few writers allow themselves to prophesy. To fi nd America?s own ?compassionate heart,? as Ortiz describes it, would amount to the rewriting of history as Native writers have inscribed ...

Biographical Appendix

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pp. 379-382


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pp. 383-406


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pp. 407-438


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pp. 439-465

E-ISBN-13: 9780803249493
E-ISBN-10: 0803249497
Print-ISBN-13: 9780803211087

Page Count: 488
Publication Year: 2014