Rez Life, the Book
While we’re on the topic of informative books, Native American author David Treuer has a new book out titled Rez Life: An Indian’s Journey Through Reservation Life. This book has been described as sobering, compelling, and well researched with great storytelling. Some deem this book to be as important as Dee Brown’s book, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, when it first came out in 1970.
Rez Life certainly has my attention. Here’s an excerpt from the book as published by Indian Country Today in April 2012:
I am not supposed to be alive. Native Americans were supposed to die off, as endangered species do, a century ago. Our reservations aren’t supposed to exist either; they were supposed to be temporary in many ways, and, under assault by the Dawes Act in the 19th century and by termination policy during the Eisenhower era in the 20th century, they were supposed to disappear, too.
But I am not dead after all, and neither is rez life despite the coldest wishes of a republic since two centuries before I was born. We stubbornly continue to exist. There were just over 200,000 Native Americans alive at the dawn of the 20th century; as of the 2000 census, we number more than 2 million. If you discount population growth by immigration, we are the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. population. But even as our populations are growing, something else, I fear, is dying: our cultures.
If you or someone you know wants to get an insider’s view of Native American history and modern day life on the reservation with all of its beauty and struggles, or to understand the true trials and challenges faced by Native Americans that continue on to this day and the resilience with which they have responded, “Rez Life” will prove an invaluable resource.
Can’t wait? Read additional excerpts as published by Atlantic Monthly Press (aka Grove/Atlantic).
To buy Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: http://www.amazon.com/Bury-My-Heart-Wounded-Knee/dp/0805086846/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1336683345&sr=1-1