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Name: Instructor: Course: Date: Critical book review of American Indian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006 Book Summary In “American Indian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006”, Roberta Ulrich narrates about termination and restoration of Native American tribes by the USA government…
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Critical book review of American Indian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006 Book Summary In “AmericanIndian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006”, Roberta Ulrich narrates about termination and restoration of Native American tribes by the USA government. The government program was labeled “termination” because it was supposed to “free” the Indians from the restrictions of the government and improve their life quality. However, instead of improving the natives’ life, it led them deeper into poverty. Moreover, it distorted the people’s sense of native identity. The topics covered in the book are illustrated through different events mentioned in different chapters. For example, the theme of discrimination has been illustrated through the author narrating that the Indians were not allowed to buy liquor. The theme of poverty also comes out where the author explains that the outcome of the program did not meet any expectations; in fact, due to the program, the Indians became poor and homeless; level of education and health care among them decreased. Theme of cruelty is also significant; the Indians were treated in a cruel manner. For example, the government tried to destroy them through diseases, elimination of food supply, and warfare. The author has organized the book in such a way that it provides a concise overview of the terminations and restorations of Native American tribes. Throughout the book, she discusses the endurance the natives had to show due to the policy implications. Her main purpose was to bring out in a clear picture all the terminations and restorations as parts of a continuing policy and to illustrate some individual, tribal differences. Analysis of Content From the first pages of the book, its intention becomes clear. The intention was to provide a clear overview of what transpired during the abovementioned period, from 1953 to 2006, and, at the end, to state the long term consequence of these events – the colossal damage to the natives (Ulrich 3). Throughout the book, the events are illustrated very clearly, and the story is narrated in a very convincing manner. The book is structured according to the topics. The structure facilitates the reading process; each chapter illustrates the main topic from a different perspective and with a different content. It is not necessary to remember the content of the first chapter to understand the next chapter; they are all independent. The content is organized in such a way that one can easily orientate oneself in the events discussed. The author’s explanation of the events is both detailed and clear. She takes the readers step by step through the history of the American tribes to eventually form a comprehensive and detailed picture and provide the readers with understanding and insight. She definitely is an interesting and convincing narrator who does not miss any, even the least important, detail. For example, when she writes that the Indians were not supposed to buy liquor, a reader immediately sees the discrimination they were subjected to (Ulrich 11). At that, the book is well balanced. The author does not only narrate about the consequences of the terminations, but also touches on the government’s agenda, terminations time-periods, and the way the program was to be implemented; she also does not fail to illustrate the events that happened in between. Throughout her work, she covers all these events and explains their importance for the main topic of the book. Strengths and Weaknesses of the Book Like any other written work, “American Indian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006” has its strengths and weaknesses. The strengths of the book are its unique structure and the way the events and themes are illustrated. Due to these qualities, it is easy for a reader to read and understand the story, to form a comprehensive picture. On the one hand, cleverly chosen themes are skillfully reinforced through the events being narrated; on the other hand, the events are masterfully illustrated and estimated in terms of a given theme. For example, when the author explains the life of the Indians after the termination mission, she contemplates of this through the prism of poverty and discrimination. She states that the Indians lived in poverty after the termination (Ulrich 9). As regards weaknesses, I have not spotted any. To my mind, the book is a nearly ideal historical research. Maybe, the title can be named its one and only weakness. It mentions the word “restoration”, whereas in truth there have been no restoration at all. On the contrary, the actions that were supposed to lead to improvement brought about poverty and sorrow. Works Cited Ulrich, Roberta. American Inian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006. University of Nebraska Press, n.d.Print. Read More
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