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Custer Died for Your Sins: An Indian Manifesto Paperback – January 1, 1988

ISBN-13: 978-0806121291 ISBN-10: 0806121297 Edition: (1st,1969)

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 292 pages
  • Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press; (1st,1969) edition (1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806121297
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806121291
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,383 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Vine Deloria, Jr., Professor of Political Science at the University of Arizona, is the author of a number of books and articles on events affecting the lives of American Indians. He serves as the Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians and is an active spokesman and leader for the American Indian community throughout the nation.


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Customer Reviews

I only have one copy.
christopher shea
One of the most notable chapters of this heavy little book discusses the Civil Rights Movement and compares Native American and African American civil rights issues.
"bonechildren"
The book is extremely well written, and the ideas a thoroughly thought out.
"adora"

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

130 of 141 people found the following review helpful By Benji Hughes on March 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
So that there's no misunderstanding, I think Vine Deloria Jr is a great man. Not a perfect man, not one who's right all of the time, but a man who means well, and has done great things for Native Americans. My feelings about Custer Died for Your Sins are similar. It's a good book, this Indian Manifesto, and has the power to do great things, still, decades after its publication. But it's not perfect. If you're a Caucasian reader, you're going to get angry. Parts of the book simply aren't meant for you, and those parts that are, are very inflammatory. This is intentional. Deloria is a master of making people furious, in order to make them think. But it's also intentional, I think, because Deloria is, understandably, himself a bitter and angry man, in many ways. The book's passages on people of mixed descent are good examples. Deloria issues the blanket statement that Native/Caucasian people are, in fact, just White people with a royalty complex. He does this to make you angry, and he does this to make you think; he wants you to understand what you are doing when you claim tribal descent or affiliation, and he wants you to be sure you're doing so with the proper respect. But he's also doing it because he's annoyed, and very tired of White people who don't have said respect. He's making a mistake, though, in his implicit assumption that, somehow, being Caucasian is the default, and that to be a Native, one really should be a wholeblood.Read more ›
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49 of 55 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 29, 1998
Format: Paperback
I think non-Native people tend to forget that Native Americans aren't interested in functioning as symbols. They have lives beyond the tribal dances they put on for tourists. They're forced to watch their religion and culture being appropriated by bored New Age types who want to be cool and hip and profound, and it's hardly surprising if some Indians, like Mr. Deloria, don't view this theft as a compliment. This book, along with the works of Sherman Alexie, represents a part of the Native community that's usually ignored by the mainstream.
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88 of 103 people found the following review helpful By Craig Chalquist, PhD, author of TERRAPSYCHOLOGY and DEEP CALIFORNIA on May 8, 2002
Format: Paperback
What impressed me most about this book was its emphasis that imperialistic exploitation is not a dead relic of a past we Anglos are ashamed of and wish to forget. The fun continues, and it makes little difference what we call it: manifest destiny, bringing civilization to the primitives, or new world order.
Another point: we've been long overdue for a Deloria-style criticism of Anglos who exploit Indian folklore and beliefs. I refer to those who claim esoteric knowledge from Native shamans and all the rest of it. What such folks, including the anthropologists and social scientists who pretend more objectivity, never ask themselves is: do I have any right to make a profit and gain a reputation from the people I claim to have learned from? What do they get out of it? Does it benefit them or harm them? (The claim that Indian people don't need any kind of concrete benefits because they aren't "materialistic" is particularly nauseating.)
At one point, while contemplating doing some interviews with local Indians about their experience of being blinkered, baffled, and b.s.ed for 250 years, I reread parts of this book--particularly the "we want to be left alone" parts--and decided that I lacked the temerity even to ask for such interviews. Deloria suggests that no research of any kind be done that isn't approved in council and that doesn't clearly demonstrate some use to the Indians themselves. I would also suggest to other Anglo readers that before they involve themselves in matters indigenous they be very honest about their motivations--particularly where any notions of being "helpful" might occur. Our "helpfulness" has been genocidal and even now perpetrates stereotypes, as Indians may tell you if you're genuinely receptive to the feedback.
Read more ›
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Benji Hughes on March 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
So that there's no misunderstanding, I think Vine Deloria Jr is a great man. Not a perfect man, not one who's right all of the time, but a man who means well, and has done great things for Native Americans. My feelings about Custer Died for Your Sins are similar. It's a good book, this Indian Manifesto, and has the power to do great things, still, decades after its publication. But it's not perfect. If you're a Caucasian reader, you're going to get angry. Parts of the book simply aren't meant for you, and those parts that are, are very inflammatory. This is intentional. Deloria is a master of making people furious, in order to make them think. But it's also intentional, I think, because Deloria is, understandably, himself a bitter and angry man, in many ways. The book's passages on people of mixed descent are good examples. Deloria issues the blanket statement that Native/Caucasian people are, in fact, just White people with a royalty complex. He does this to make you angry, and he does this to make you think; he wants you to understand what you are doing when you claim tribal descent or affiliation, and he wants you to be sure you're doing so with the proper respect. But he's also doing it because he's annoyed, and very tired of White people who don't have said respect. He's making a mistake, though, in his implicit assumption that, somehow, being Caucasian is the default, and that to be a Native, one really should be a wholeblood.Read more ›
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