Dee Brown's Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee was first published in the United States in 1970. This landmark book—which incorporated a number of eyewitness accounts and official records—offered a scathing indictment of the U.S. politicians, soldiers, and citizens who colonized the American West. Focusing mainly on the thirty-year span from 1860 to 1890, the book was the first account of the time period told from the Native-American point of view. It demonstrated that whites instigated the great majority of the conflicts between Native Americans and themselves. Brown began searching for the facts about Native Americans after he met several as a child and had a hard time believing the myths about their savagery that were popular among white people. Brown published his book a century after the events took place, but it was a timely publication, since many U.S. citizens were already feeling guilty about their country's involvement in the Vietnam War. Brown's book depicted, in detail, the U.S. government's attempt to acquire Native Americans' land by using a mix of threats, deception, and murder. In addition, the book showed the attempts to crush Native-American beliefs and practices. These acts were justified by the theory of Manifest Destiny, which stated that European descendents acting for the U.S. government had a God-given right to take land from the Native Americans. Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee is Brown's best-known work and has since overshadowed all of his other books.
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