Our History Is the Future: Standing Rock versus the Dakota Access Pipeline, and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance

Nick Estes. Verso, $26.95 (320p) ISBN 978-1-78663-672-0
“The resistance camps [protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline] may have been temporary, but the struggle for Native liberation continues, and the fort is falling,” declares Estes, American studies professor and enrolled member of the Lower Brule tribe, in this scorching indictment of American settler colonialism, which resulted in the near-genocide of the continent’s indigenous peoples. With scrupulous research and urgent prose, he declares the DAPL protest a flowering of indigenous resistance with roots deep in history and Native sacred land. Focusing primarily on the Oceti Sakowin (the “Seven Council Fires”), also known as the Sioux Nation, Estes transports the reader from the Oceti Sakowin camp of the DAPL protest, filled with tear gas, police dogs, and water cannons, back to the bloody Indian wars culminating in the forced reservation system, the apocalyptic flooding of tribal lands along the Missouri River for Army Corps of Engineers damming projects, the American Indian Movement standoff at Wounded Knee, and the as-yet-unsuccessful fight for international recognitions at the United Nations. According to Estes, it is despite these losses, or perhaps because of them, that indigenous resistance has manifested a vision “of a future without settler colonialism.” In this powerful work, Estes’s condemnation of the United States government is clear and resonant. (Feb.)
Reviewed on : 01/03/2019
Release date: 02/05/2019
Genre: Nonfiction
Book - 978-1-78663-674-4
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