Analysis Of Nathaniel Philbrick's Mayflower

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In a world of current events that lead humanity to reflect on the past for answers, countless books are written to inform people of the world’s somewhat controversial history. In many cases, bias finds its way into the words of many authors, allowing history- the kind that hides any painful truths- to be written by the winners. Nathaniel Philbrick’s Mayflower follows the journey of the Pilgrims as the venture to the New World and create a destructive trail, leading to war with Native Americans. As in any story, especially one involving war, there are two sides, and Philbrick makes it clear what side he fights for. Philbrick depicts the Pilgrims in a positive and biased way through the detailed and glorified portrayal, biased Pilgrim quotations, …show more content…
From the start, a big contrast between Philbrick’s view of the Native Americans and the Pilgrims exist, starting with the book cover. Mayflower follows the Pilgrims, and the book is even named after the boat they sailed to the New World on. When the Pilgrims are not being glorified, the Native Americans are misrepresented and shown negatively. There is rarely any mention of a Native American’s personal life, but there were mindless quotes about their large stature. Furthermore, while there were no emotions like the pathos appeal with the Pilgrims, Philbrick is passionate in showing how the Native Americans fall compared to the Pilgrims. He called them offensive names like Indians and heathens that were hostile and savage, and he devalued them, saying that “the assumption remained that a single Englishman was worth at least ten Indians in battle” (Philbrick 241). Even describing war, his bias shown through, calling a day when the Pilgrims kill Native Americans as “a remarkable day” (Philbrick 250), but calling the reversal “a day of horror and death” (Philbrick 238). The Native Americans are not only presented negatively by Philbrick’s words, but by the quotes he showcases. The only depictions of Native Americans are through Pilgrim observation, leaving no room for the Native Americans to tell their story, even in a history that …show more content…
Attempting to inform the reader on the early starts of America, Philbrick only proves his bias of the Pilgrims, not giving the Native Americans the credit in history they deserve. He first goes into excessive detail about the Pilgrims, talking about the specifics of their religion and voyage. Additionally, he glorifies and dramatizes these portrayals with great emotion and ornateness. When his voicing is not enough, he adds quotes from the Pilgrims he agrees with, adding his personal agreements and only ever letting the Native Americans be represented by Pilgrim quotes. He finally makes his bias clear by showing his dislike of the Native Americans, who fall short in comparison to his glittering Pilgrims, through name calling and misrepresentation. Staying with the trend of history, Philbrick lets his bias seep into another two-sided story, allowing his opinions to blind the eyes of all who try to learn from the past -written by the winners- that is called

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