Vanishing Indian Analysis

Improved Essays
Putting It All Together (Page 531)
The widely circulated idea of the “Vanishing Indian” in the nineteenth century, which ultimately proved to be false, was one of the most prominent ideas as westward expansion continued. The concept was that the culture of the Native Americans would be unable to adapt to the ways of life brought by the Americans. Although some sources do make the vanishing indian belief seem plausible, there are more which point to Native Americans successfully fitting into the new America. The first source demonstrates why the belief might have been so widely accepted; while sources three and four, clearly show how Native Americans were capable of living alongside the white people who now inhabited the country; and document
…show more content…
The fourth source of information is an old photograph of a Oglala Sioux woman. At this time being photographed was a big deal. The fact that this woman took the time to have her picture taken clearly illustrates that Indians had no trouble in joining the technologically superior realm of the white Americans. There is nothing in Native Americans culture or religion that bans new ideas or new inventions, so becoming part of the American world was to be expected. Document three spends a great deal of time discussing the farms of Indians, as well as how they’ve been integrated into the workforce. They needed to heavily stress the idea that Native Americans were not dangerous, due to the stereotypes spread by documents such as the one seen in the first source. This document disproves the concept that indians would ultimately vanish by showing that their is a place for them to fit in with the relatively new nation. It shows that Native Americans could not only avoid vanishing, but …show more content…
The position held by scholar Louis Henry Morgan was that neither outcomes would completely happen. He spoke about the Native Americans in a way that implied they were inherently different. Morgan said that the logical thing to do would be to study the Indian culture to see what could be learned from it. He wasn’t concerned with the idea of taking steps to allow the Natives to join the American society because he viewed them as less advanced, and even gave them ratings. While the idea is interesting, it ultimately proved untrue, as the Indian people were successfully able to incorporate themselves into the society, despite the barbaric tendencies Morgan pointed out. Although Morgan did not seem to believe in the Vanishing Indian theory in the sense that Natives would go extinct, he failed to anticipate that they were completely willing to join the Americans. All in all, it can be said without the Vanishing Indian theory was completely false, and was spread through stereotypes and exaggerations. The first document showed the probable reason for the prejudice against the Native American tribes, while the final two clearly illustrate why the idea of a vanishing culture was ignorant, and the third document expresses the idea that Natives might never join

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    The saw the native people an inferior race, they disrespected them, destroyed their cities, cultures, and monument without consideration. 3. Carlos Fuentes opinion about the conquest was not fully positive nor negative. However, it seems to be slightly positive than negative. He said that the conquest would have been fully negative if something good didn’t come out of it.…

    • 877 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    They seem to be inherently at odds with each other- Indians are either becoming more civilized, or they are not. However, they are not as incompatible as they seem. Putting aside the ideological incoherency of Indian policy as a whole, it seems that the one idea justifies the other. That is, because they are a savage people, then assimilation is a great, helpful thing. If Indians were no longer understood as savages, then there would be no justification for continued assimilation policies, however the government still wanted to pat itself on the back for what a good job it is doing.…

    • 1409 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Indian Culture

    • 874 Words
    • 4 Pages

    American expansion into Indian territory came with many challenges and oppositions for the native people. More than anything, the Indians wanted to coexist with the white man in one shared country. Most of Indian culture seemed to favor peace in times of conflict. The Indians trusted the federal government, the treaties, and new U.S. policies but these were worthless in saving their lands. They were promised justice but repeatedly ended up being impacted negatively by something they perceived as positive.…

    • 874 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    While most successful trade deals are built to be mutually beneficial, this agreement was doomed to fail from the beginning. It appears to me that the Native Americans did not foresee the influx of settlers that would soon be settling in the New World, which indubitably would have persuaded their agreement to the trade alliance. Similarly, the English simply viewed the Indians as means to an end. Through the expedient actions of the English, they sought to benefit from the Native American’s resources without a thought to the moral corruption in stealing land and refusing to integrate or comply with the Indian’s way of life. The salient wrongdoings of English settlers, during John Smith’s absence, truly showcase the categorical and remorseless contempt of the English towards the Native…

    • 474 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    These textbooks fail to describe the repudiation of Europeans to recognize the rights of Native Americans, who were themselves the first settlers of North America (Calloway 73). Therefore, there is a major contradiction between our history in United States textbooks of European settlement and the reality of the cruel dispossession of Native American land. So they can avoid this contradiction, Americans believe in the myth of the "empty continent" peopled by nomadic savages and simply overlook the brutal reality of the Native American-White conflict (Calloway 15). This process of denial is called cognitive dissonance. When “new information conflicts with something we already ‘know,” we tend to have difficulty accepting those new ideas (Lecture 1-1).…

    • 2163 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Some may regard Indian Removal Policy as a moral and benevolent action. However, it was not benevolent. The U.S. dishonored treaties and they just hated the Indians by showing serious authority to do whatever they wanted to Indians. As I say one more time, Andrew Jackson’s Indian Removal Policy was not benevolent at all, I think. It was reasonable and understandable that this policy was a period of expansion to the westward, but he overlooked a supreme court and took responsibility by relocating a lot of Native Americans are not justifiable.…

    • 372 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Indian Mascot

    • 938 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Just because a person has economic advantage, more resources, or even more quality of access to justice does not mean that he or she has more power to do as he or she wishes over others. According to De La Cruz, “White privilege… is an overreaching, comprehensive framework of policies, practices, institutions and cultural norms that undergird every aspect of U.S. society.” (De La Cruz, 2003) Not everyone feels the same towards Native Americans causing people to be skeptical in the use of any N.A culture. Many want to get rid of these “Indian” missuses, while others swear that the local N. A’s have approved the usage of their attire, culture, or impersonation etc. As mentioned, in an article “The Washington Post published a poll on its front page that 90 percent of “Native Americans” were “not botherd” by the dictionary-defined ethnic slur “Redskins,”. This implies that they were not, statistics are not facts therefore it is not true simply it is raw data that is posted online.…

    • 938 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Indian Removal Act DBQ

    • 1334 Words
    • 6 Pages

    Indians were not considered to be American citizens which restricted them of land and a voice in government. Nonetheless, the Indians had civil rights, the government’s choice to abridge these rights showed the nation 's lack of respect for the preamble outline. It tweaked the meaning of “establish justice” to apply only to whites. The federal government favored the land of Native Americans over the Native Americans themselves. It goes to show how justice was not the priority of the nation at the time, but rather the expansion of the nation’s economic power.…

    • 1334 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Because of the different values both the Indians and the English colonists held, it is not as convincing to believe Indians gained trade that was useful to them or if the English colonists payed fairly due to no factual or even theoretical evidence. Bushnell states, “and one consequence of this relation was that the trade and tended to merge together. The best examples of the process are to be found among the sachems themselves” (Bushnell, 1953, pg 202). Since their processes of trade were only to be based off the memory of the sachems it limits the article to prove whether these trades actually…

    • 932 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Though the Articles of Confederation had few effective means to enforce its laws, raise revenue, or regulate the economy. For instance, the attained western lands from the Native Americans, but in the end the Articles of Confederation was destined to fail in every way, because before it could inforce laws to benefit the country, it contradicted itself by allowing the separation of states. The results of this was disorganized and chaotic, and I myself is glad that our founding fathers realized this and developed the…

    • 1263 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays