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Book Reviews 143 dividends in providing content for a turbulent era. Ultimately, the judge in the Banks-Means trial dismissed the charges, but the time, effort, and money channelled into the defence effort exhausted AIM's vitality as a social movement . Having escaped the Wounded Knee charges, however, Banks and Means each faced other criminal charges for their parts in events not directly related to Wounded Knee. Meanwhile, AIM suffered from having its leaders and resources diverted to the trials. Although Sayer lacks a smoking gun to show the government intended to thus destroy AIM, he builds an impressive case that will convince many. Sayer succeeds remarkably in this well-written, thoroughly researched first book-length study of the Wounded Knee trials. Not only does he report and analyse the trials admirably, he also provides a coherent and valuable discussion of AIM and the United States' legal and social reactions to it. Furthermore, Sayer's analysis of the Wounded Knee trials exposes how the media's definition of news can lead it to miss or misrepresent important stories and why consumers of print and broadcast journalism should critically examine what they absorb. Sayer could have strengthened his analysis by comparing the Wounded Knee trials to other instances where the legal system railroaded members of groups or movements deemed dangerous. The cases of anarchists Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti and Communists Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, for instance, may have provided excellent foils for Sayer's thesis. Students of U.S. legal and Native-American history must read this book; students of social movements, the 1970s, and the media should read it. Todd M. Kerstetter Texas Christian University Jon Gjerde. The Minds of the West: Ethnocultural Revolution in the Rural Middle West, 1830-1917. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1997. Pp. xiii +426, tables, figures, notes, and index. In The Minds of the West, Jon Gjerde focusses primarily on three ethnic strains: Germans, both Catholic and Lutheran; Norwegians and to some extent other Scandinavians; and ''Yankees" or "Americans." Catholic Irish 144 Canadian Review of American Studies Revue canadienne cf etudes arnericaines and eastern Europeans receive somewhat less attention. Gjerde confines his analysis to "whites" for, as he points out in a footnote, "the overwhelming majority of immigrants to the West ... were of European background" (240, n. 14). He also assumes that native Americans had been expelled from the upper Midwest during the period he is describing, which is not the case. Gjerde is working, however, in the tradition of scholars like Kathleen Conzen, Frederick Luebke, and others who have studied immigration and ethnicity. As one might expect from Gjerde's earlier work, such as From Peasants to Farmers: The Migration from Balestrand, Non.vay, to the Upper Middle West (1985), the strength of this volume lies in his close demographic analysis of the ways in which family, religious beliefs, and voting behaviours are all structured by varying concepts of the relationships between god, man (specifically, not generically), and state. Gjerde's title, The Minds of the West, puts one in mind of W.J.Cashe's classic The Mind of the South (1941), and the book begins slowly, with references to Crevecoeur and Turner and the Significance of the Frontier. Is the frontier truly the most American of regions or is it, as Cooper and the colonial elites and even Crevecoeur himself feared, the home of dangerous border riffraff who threaten law and order? Will it Americanize the immigrants or allow them to form ethnic enclaves that will nurture only what later was called so memorably "Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion"? The book picks up steam when Gjerde moves on to look at the communities . He shows the considerable variation in patterns of age at and likelihood of marriage among siblings in immigrant and "American" families and relates them to the difference between the "American" idea of family as a group of individuals in which children are urged to leave home and become upwardly mobile and the immigrant idea of family as a community in which children owe a duty to their parents that determines whether and when they will move out or stay at home. Gjerde also considers the role...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1710-114X
Print ISSN
0007-7720
Pages
pp. 143-146
Launched on MUSE
2019-01-02
Open Access
No
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