The cholera epidemic of killed perhaps half of those remaining. The Pawnee rarely fought with whites, and they were trusting enough to sell the Army a site for a new fort to protect the overlanders.
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The Union Pacific even hired them as guards against the Sioux. The next group encountered were the Arapaho and Cheyenne. The Arapaho were religiously opposed to war. Closely associated with the Cheyenne, they were known for their friendliness and desire to trade. The Cheyenne were originally corn farmers from Minnesota but were forced to become buffalo-hunting nomads by the raiding Sioux.
They were guests of the Sioux when Custer and his men rode into battle at the Little Big Horn in The Indians causing the most change on the Plains were those who called themselves Dakota or Lakota or Nakota — whites with different accents heard the Indian words differently. They had migrated to Nebraska and Wyoming by way of Manitoba and the Dakotas, and their arrival on the Great Plains precipitated a long period of warfare and skirmishing with the tribes they pushed aside. Some Sioux farmed corn and augmented this with buffalo, game and fish.
Others were nomadic, moving entire villages seasonally. They were a powerful and proud people, and when pushed by settlers they responded with hostility. A highly respected leader of the Sioux during this period was Chief Red Cloud. In , he demanded the abandonment of two forts along the Bozeman Trail.
He was defeated after an attack on Fort Laramie.
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Word of the massacre reached the East Coast population centers on July 4, , and newspapers gave it front page coverage the following day — the day after the United States of America celebrated its th birthday. The timing was a remarkable coincidence, and it surely contributed to the hostile attitude of many whites toward the Indians.
Younger braves had been dancing the Ghost Dance, a religious movement that preached invincibility and promised the return of the great buffalo herds that had been slaughtered by white hunters and settlers. Indian Agents, fearing another uprising, demanded the Sioux be rounded up and moved to Pine Ridge Reservation. The men of the Sioux band were turning over their weapons when a rifle went off. The soldiers started shooting at anyone that moved, including women and children.
They even used field artillery against the Indians, many of whom were unarmed. The timing was a remarkable coincidence, and it surely contributed to the hostile attitude of many whites toward the Indians. Younger braves had been dancing the Ghost Dance, a religious movement that preached invincibility and promised the return of the great buffalo herds that had been slaughtered by white hunters and settlers.
Indian Agents, fearing another uprising, demanded the Sioux be rounded up and moved to Pine Ridge Reservation. The men of the Sioux band were turning over their weapons when a rifle went off. The soldiers started shooting at anyone that moved, including women and children. They even used field artillery against the Indians, many of whom were unarmed. Over Sioux were killed; 31 soldiers died in the crossfire. Congress, swept up in the hysteria of the times along with most everyone else, awarded several Medals of Honor to soldiers at Wounded Knee.
In , Indian activists seized the site of Wounded Knee to publicize the plight of American Indians. Congress was asked to pay compensation to descendants and build a memorial to the fallen Sioux. These were the intermarried Shoshone and Bannocks. The Shoshone, in particular, were friendly to whites. Credit goes to Lewis and Clark for reuniting a Shoshone chief with his sister, their interpreter and guide, Sacajawea. The Shoshone assisted mountain men and Mormons alike. Chief Washakie was a friend of Jim Bridger, and he helped whites with safe passage and boasted that he had never killed a white person.
The same could not be said for the Bannocks.
The Bannock War was caused by a decrease in buffalo and loss of hunting land. It was then determined by white authorities that the Nez Perce would be better off on a reservation. Young Chief Joseph, however, had promised his father he would never give up the Wallowa Valley. When Joseph refused to accept transfer to a reservation in , the Nez Perce War began. Joseph continually outwitted and embarrassed the Army in what is now a legendary campaign that is still studied by aspiring officers in armies around the world.
When it became clear that the Army would accept neither defeat nor compromise, Joseph decided to take his people to Canada, beyond the reach of American soldiers. Slowed down by women, children, and all of their possessions, they still kept ahead of the cavalry. One can safely guess that soon the misery of everyday life would have destroyed their love.
The catastrophe thus occurs in order to save their love, to sustain the illusion that, if it had not happened, they would have lived "happily ever after". A further clue is provided by DiCaprio's final moments.
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He is freezing in the cold water, dying, while Winslet is safely floating on a large piece of wood. Aware that she is losing him, she cries "I'll never let you go!
Because he has done his job. Beneath the story of a love affair, Titanic tells another story, that of a spoiled high-society girl with an identity crisis: she is confused, doesn't know what to do with herself, and DiCaprio, much more than just her love partner, is a kind of "vanishing mediator" whose function is to restore her sense of identity and purpose in life. His last words before he disappears into the freezing North Atlantic are not the words of a departing lover, but the message of a preacher, telling her to be honest and faithful to herself. Cameron's superficial Hollywood Marxism his crude privileging of the lower classes and caricatural depiction of the cruel egotism of the rich should not deceive us.
Beneath this sympathy for the poor lies a reactionary myth, first fully deployed by Rudyard Kipling's Captains Courageous.
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It concerns a young rich person in crisis who gets his or her vitality estored through brief intimate contact with the full-blooded life of the poor. What lurks behind the compassion for the poor is their vampiric exploitation. But today, Hollywood increasingly seems to have abandoned this formula.
The film of Dan Brown's Angels and Demons must surely be the first case of a Hollywood adaptation of a popular novel in which there is sex between the hero and the heroine in the book, but not in its film version - in clear contrast to the old tradition of adding a sex scene to a film based on a novel in which there is none. Avatar's fidelity to the old formula of creating a couple, its full trust in fantasy, and its story of a white man marrying the aboriginal princess and becoming king, make it ideologically a rather conservative, old-fashioned film.
Its technical brilliance serves to cover up this basic conservatism.
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It is easy to discover, beneath the politically correct themes an honest white guy siding with ecologically sound aborigines against the "military-industrial complex" of the imperialist invaders , an array of brutal racist motifs: a paraplegic outcast from earth is good enough to get the hand of abeautiful local princess, and to help the natives win the decisive battle.
The film teaches us that the only choice the aborigines have is to be saved by the human beings or to be destroyed by them. In other words, they can choose either to be the victim of imperialist reality, or to play their allotted role in the white man's fantasy.
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In reaction to this project, a Maoist Naxalite armed rebellion exploded. They are people who, even after 60 years of India's so-called independence, have not had access to education, health care or legal redress.
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They are people who have been mercilessly exploited for decades, consistently cheated by small businessmen and moneylenders, the women raped as a matter of right by police and forest department personnel.
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