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The Dutch-Munsee Encounter in America: The Struggle for Sovereignty in the Hudson Valley (European Expansion and Global Interaction) Hardcover – April 28, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-1571816726 ISBN-10: 1571816720 Edition: 1St Edition

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Product Details

  • Series: European Expansion and Global Interaction (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Berghahn Books; 1St Edition edition (April 28, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1571816720
  • ISBN-13: 978-1571816726
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,255,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kees-jan waterman on March 6, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Otto collects and connects all historical traces of one Native American society, the Munsees, and incorporates them into a study of colonial relations in the Dutch period of New York's history (1609-1664). The Munsees, a word that means "people of the Minisink," refers to a constellation of culturally and linguistically related Algonquian-speaking indigenous groups. During much of the seventeenth century, they lived along the middle and lower Hudson River, including Manhattan, and the upper reaches of the Delaware River. Munsees most immediately felt the brunt of Dutch colonization but their history has not been studied as extensively as that of other Native peoples. References to Munsee bands in colonial records are quite scarce, and individual Munsees are mentioned even more rarely.

Otto succeeds convincingly. He organizes his study into three main chronological phases of the development of colonial society (exploration, trade, and settlement) and analyzes the developing relations between settlers and Munsees, and the dynamic processes that moulded them. He aims to determine if indigenous responses to the encroaching Dutch colonial system can best be understood as examples of accommodation, acculturation, or resistance. The three phases are characterized by increasing levels of erosion of Native political and cultural sovereignty, with the exception of migration, which the author presents as a means for the Munsees to retain hegemony and avoid being subdued by the colonial system. On the fundamental issue of intercultural contact and exchanges in a colonial setting, Otto claims that the Munsees adopted European goods and practices but tended to incorporate these into their prevailing cultural patterns.
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