In First Americans, Thomas Grillot challenges pervasive understandings of Native patriotism as a reflection of the Native “warrior ethos” (9), convincingly proving that Indian patriotism “is indeed a historical phenomenon” (223). Grillot focuses on veterans and reservation communities in the years following World War I. This moment marked the start of two significant historical trends: the beginning of Native peoples’ explicit discourse about and expression of their national belonging (both tribal and American), and the changing understanding of the relationship between veterans and the state. In articulating patriotism, Native people did not dismiss their experiences of violence and colonization—they recognized the Indian Wars of the late nineteenth century and challenged ongoing assimilation efforts carried out by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). Native veterans utilized patriotic symbols that non-Natives would recognize—for example, the US flag or the vote—to demand recognition of Native space, treaty rights, and cultural practices. In addition...
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Book Review| July 01 2019
First Americans: U.S. Patriotism in Indian Country after World War I
First Americans: U.S. Patriotism in Indian Country after World War I. By Grillot, Thomas. (
New Haven, CT:
Yale University Press,
2018. ix +298 pp., map, acknowledgments, illustrations, notes, index. $65.00 hardcover.)
Ethnohistory (2019) 66 (3): 609–610.
Mary Klann; First Americans: U.S. Patriotism in Indian Country after World War I. Ethnohistory 1 July 2019; 66 (3): 609–610. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00141801-7518066
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