An “indescribably touching, extraordinarily intelligent" (Los Angeles Times Book Review) chronicle of a fatal gun-battle between FBI agents and American Indian Movement activists byrenowned writer Peter Matthiessen (1927-2014), author of the National Book Award-winning The Snow Leopard and the novel In Paradise
On a hot June morning in 1975, a desperate shoot-out between FBI agents and Native Americans near Wounded Knee, South Dakota, left an Indian and two federal agents dead. Four members of the American Indian Movement were indicted on murder charges, and one, Leonard Peltier, was convicted and is now serving consecutive life sentences in a federal penitentiary. Behind this violent chain of events lie issues of great complexity and profound historical resonance, brilliantly explicated by Peter Matthiessen in this controversial book. Kept off the shelves for eight years because of one of the most protracted and bitterly fought legal cases in publishing history, In the Spirit of Crazy Horse reveals the Lakota tribe’s long struggle with the U.S. government, and makes clear why the traditional Indian concept of the earth is so important at a time when increasing populations are destroying the precious resources of our world.
About the Author
Peter Matthiessen was the cofounder of the Paris Review and is the author of numerous works of nonfiction, including In the Spirit of Crazy Horse, Indian Country, and The Snow Leopard, winner of the National Book Award.
“By the time I had turned the final page, I felt angry enough […] to want to shout from the rooftops, ‘Wake up, America, before it’s too damned late!’ For Matthiessen, in this extraordinary, complex work, powerfully propounds several large and disturbing themes which the white majority in America will ignore at extreme peril.” —Nick Kotz, The Washington Post
“A giant of a book . . . indescribably touching, extraordinarily intelligent.” —The Los Angeles Times
“In the Spirit of Crazy Horse is really about contemporary America and the way American law is seen through the eyes of American Indians. . . . It is one of those rare books that permanently change one’s consciousness about important, yet neglected, facets of our history.” —The New York Times Book Review
“[Matthiessen] is neither gullible nor uncritical. He realistically portrays individuals, landscapes, customs, and problems that, though wholly American, are unfamiliar to most American citizens.” —The New Yorker
“One of the most dramatic demonstrations of endemic American racism that has yet been written—a powerful, unsettling book that will force even the most ethno-pious reader to inspect the limits of his understanding.” —The New York Review of Books