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Olivia Cosco 9/23 blog post

Chapter 7 of Peoples History of the United States was very interesting to me in the sense that I had never really read about president Andrew Jackson in that light before. While I have learned in history that he passed the Indian Removal Act, the way this was played out was horrifying to read about. Zinn portrayed the cruelty that was used to move out Indians. In fact, it was actually their land that they were being forced to leave. They were marginalized and even killed in order for white people to settle on their land. In the episode 9 podcast, Dr. Bezio discusses the fact that we must accept that we will never know the full truth and every single detail to history. While this may be true, reading Zinn’s chapter made me wonder why history teaches us to characterize Andrew Jackson as a hero, when in fact, the horrifying details of his Indian Removal Act are know. I wish we learned more about these truths rather than being taught the glorified version.

The short story, Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience was also very interesting to me. I felt that this story tied both the podcast and Zinn’s chapter together by giving us a personal experience. In this story, Jesse essentially has everything in his life taken from him by other people. He comes back to work after being sick, only to find out he was replaced by someone better. After finding this out, getting into a fight at the bar, and waking up realizing his wife was probably very angry, Jesse goes home to find out that the “White Wolf” had talked to his wife who decided she wanted Jesse out. Essentially, his wife was also taken from him. To me, this story portrayed the way that white people took Indigenous people’s land from them in the 1830’s. It was their land first, the same way it was Jesse’s job and wife first.

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  1. Margot Roussel Margot Roussel

    I really liked the short story, it felt like some sort of black mirror episode where the audience just watched everything go wrong in this persons life. I did also see the symbolism in that this white wolf ie the white man took everything from Jesse ie the native people. I think it shows how easy it can be to totally taking over peoples life and how it was done without much consideration on the impact of their culture or wellbeing.

  2. Zachary Andrews Zachary Andrews

    I also thought Chapter 7 was really interesting. Something that was absolutely horrendous was that people have always believed Native Americans to be less intelligent when compared to the Europeans who originally came in contact with them. We neglected to accept the fact that they had their own towns, governments, city plans, craftsman, etc… This is not the working of a simple community. It’s the working of an advanced community. Why didn’t Europeans embrace them with open arms as they did to the Europeans? Something I have learned from history is that if there are two options and one of those options involved making money. Then the person or people will always choose making money even if it means killing people, ruining their sacred land, or other immoral and inhumane acts.

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