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Lewis and Clark: Across the Divide Paperback – Bargain Price, August 15, 2004


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Paperback, Bargain Price, August 15, 2004
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 424 pages
  • ISBN-10: 1588340953
  • ASIN: B000H2MHF2
  • Product Dimensions: 12 x 9 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,307,901 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Sumptuously produced...re-create[s] the material world of the early 19th century and Pacific Northwest. -- Wall Street Journal --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Carolyn Gilman is the curator of Lewis and Clark: The National Bicentennial Exhibition. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

96 of 113 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This book is the catalogue to a Lewis & Clark Exhibit being put together by the Smithsonian and Missouri Historical Society. First, the good news. The exhibit (and book) documents and presents over 400 objects and artifacts related to the L&C expedition. These items have been gathered from institutions from all over the world (such as the American Philosophical Society, Smithsonian, Library of Congress, National Archives, etc.) The objects presented consists of maps, art work, journal excerpts, expedition artifacts, Indian artifacts. Some of the object are directly traced to the expedition; others (such as some of the Indian artifacts) are presented as examples of objects that Lewis & Clark describe in their journals. Each object is described, photographed, and documented. One chapter of the book describes (with flow charts) how the expedition artifacts have traveled over the past 200 years and how the items reached various institutions. The photographs are beautiful, the book layout is stunning. The book is well-worth the money for this alone.
Unfortunately, as with many Lewis and Clark books, the text (witten by Carolyn Gilman)is marred by political correctness.
For example, one whole chapter is devoted to the role of women in the tribal society versus the roles of women in post-colonial society. Why this is relevant to the Lewis and Clark expedition escapes me. But then, I am a man, so I am likely too stupid to understand this. Ms. Gilman calls the biblical creation account in Genesis the "Euro-American" creation story. No Carolyn, the biblical creation story arose in Mesopotamia about 4000 years ago.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is very interesting. It is very complete especially regarding "Euro/American Cultural biases v. Indian Cultural biase. The art work is very good although the light brown ink and small font is difficult to read without very bright light. It includes an abundance of maps by Lewis and Clark.
The editor's own biase is glaring. She seems overly critical of the exporers of the time as viewed for a Twenty-First century female air conditioned East Coast office. The explorers are repeatedly critized while the Natives are glamorized and their culture elevated. The explorers are not Cultural Anthropologists and they did an amazing task with limited resources and education, both of which are held in abundance by the editor.
Other than the accademic viewpoint it is a very interesting read and I learned a lot.
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48 of 76 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 12, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This book is a tragedy. Because it is the text that will accompany the bicentennial touring exibit of L&C it will have a wide spread readership, yet it is another politically correct dose of revisionist clap-trap.
Much of it deals with Indian Culture that has few specific connective points to the Corps of Discovery and their brave and honorable exploration.
There is no doubt that many Indian tribes played important roles in the success of the venture. They showed friendship and intelligence at critical times during the L&C Journey. Yet, to pound and pound on this to the point that L&C are nearly reduced to stumbling, lucky buffoons finally wears thin.
All the negatives(L&C were slaveholders etc., etc.) are highlighted while many of the astonishing achivements are glossed over.
The photos are inconsistent. I know the intent was to show the articles on display at the exhibit but many pictures are too small to do justice to the subject shown. There are some beautiful prints of Bodner and Catlin paintings but again an overabundace of Indian artifacts and dress.
This book could have and should have been so much more than it is.
The quality of the paper and binding are its strongest points.
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14 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Myron Marty on January 11, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This is an outstanding book: lucidly written, well-reasoned, soundly researched, and visually appealing. In my review of this book and others on the Lewis and Clark expeditiion, published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, I state that the subtitle refers to the divide the author crosses, that is, the divide that has so far minimized or ignored the crucial role played by Indians, including Indian women, in making the explorers' long journey successful.

Carolyn Gilman crosses this divide skilllfully and diplomatically. Granted, readers and viewers who resist fresh interpretations that grant to non-whites and women the recognition they deserve, as does this book, are likely to call her approach "politically correct." That label misses the point. The appropriate label for the author, the book, and exhibition it accompanies is "h.h.," that is, "historically honest." Cross the divide with the author, and that is what you will discover.
My review can be found at <[...]
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11 of 28 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 17, 2004
Format: Hardcover
My my, all the fits about this book - it is "PC,' or it is revisionist, what ever that means. In all, this is a good book which attempts to be balanced and soothe all the nerves of the thin skinned who still think Americans are a privileged people with a Manifest Destiny to do what they will to other cultures.
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