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Native-American Studies

Gary Anderson’s Sitting Bull and the Paradox of the Lakota Nation

In his book, Gary Anderson argues that Sitting Bull was a very interesting man not only as a human but also as an Indian. In this fascinating book, the author seeks to explore the sacrifices it takes for one to be a leader of a given state. Gary has managed to portray Sitting Bull as a leader with unique attributes, which makes him outstanding from the rest of the people. He also illustrates that he is human through mistakes he commits, and in the way he thinks during his rule. In order to understand Sitting Bull, close study of this individual is needed in order to reveal how comes he posses supernatural abilities while he is human.

In this book, Gary points out how in the late 1800s the American government pushed Indian Americans from their land all in the name of expansion to attain Manifest Destiny. Sitting Bull, who was the chief of the Sioux and the entire Lakota nation, was the only leader who stood against this plan of the federal government. Through his supernatural powers, he led a number of Sioux warriors in battles against the federal government. His main aim was to fight for his people’s rights of land ownership. He was opposed to the forceful methods the America federal government was using to take over lands belonging to the Indians. In this battle, he used his strong spiritual leadership to fight against the US army. In Sitting Bull and the Paradox of the Lakota Nation, Gary C. Anderson feels like the American government should acknowledge the power of other leaders. The determination and courage of men like Sitting Bull should not be underrated. His impact on the American history and Native American cannot be forgotten like most happenings. He comes out as a leader to reckon with.

Sitting Bull is a man who started engaging in war right from his childhood. At the age of fourteen, he could accompany adults into war battles. As an untrained youth, his work was to learn the conditions of battles. It was during this time that he learnt how to kill coups riding horses. Slowly he gains skills and became a formidable warrior in the Lakota nationhood. After mastering the skills, his father performed rituals, which raised him to the status of a full warrior. His father is the one who sharpened his war prowess. Each day they could spend hours trying to sharpen shooting and riding skills. Through war and hunting, he was able to master skills on how to maneuver a speeding pony at the same time launch arrows from a bow accurately. By showing all this, the author is trying to portray how Sitting Bull built his reputation. As a warrior, he learnt the traditions and customs of war, something that helped him in fighting against the American army. He was able to master Indian qualities of bravery, wisdom, generosity, and fortitude. He used these skills to fight hard in defending his people, religion and land. As a leader, sacrifices are required, even if it means losing life to defend followers. Giving up was the last thing that was on the mind of this ruler. His aim was to die while fighting for the rights of his people.

The author considers Sitting Bull as a hero who for many years dedicated his life towards fighting for the rights of his people. The author not only depicts Sitting Bull as a peculiar leader, but also a special individual who stood up and fought for what he thought was right for him and his people. He prevailed over a number of disappointments to become a successful person in life. Gary depicts him as a symbol of opposition to the policies of the government. In this book, the Lakota culture is seen undergoing changes as the whites settled in different parts of America. This made the life of Indians face a huge threat as the whites were forcing the Indians out of their land. Despite the large numbers of US army and the weakening of Indians by diseases, Sitting Bull managed to mobilize enough warriors to fight against the Native Americans.

Sitting Bull used the traditional Lakota style of fighting where each man was to defend himself. This style required each man to be brave. Although, it was not that productive, it gave the warriors power to push on, even when they were overpowered. In conclusion, Gary shows Sitting Bull as a superlative warrior, a good tribesman, and a holy man. These three personality traits made him the most successful leader of the Lakota nation. He was a person who was admired and people looked upon him. Most of them took him as their role model. Personally, I admire his personality because he does not let the Americans grab his land. The Americans are surprised about his resistance. In addition, I find this to be a good book as it highlights the history of America in the 19th century. This book is appropriate for learners who are interested in history.