The Ghost DanceIs it a fair statement to say that the Ghost Dance represented the human instinct of survival?

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litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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It was also an attempt to demonstrate independence and exert some control over their fate. The people had given up hope, but were also trying to connect with their culture and have something of their own, something that they could control.
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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In reply to #3, definitely revolt is a tactic that is used and has been used at many points in history by a group under pressure, facing extinction or wanting to bring about change in their society. Consider one of the biggest examples in history - the French Revolution, which was a class based revolt aimed at making French working-class people possess more rights and ending their oppression by the nobility.

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dbello | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

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I think it is more appropriate to say that the Ghost Dance was a means of revolt. You could almost say that it is to the Native American, especially the Plains Indians, what the Passover is to Jews. In the late 1860s, most Native Americans had been forced onto reservations, where living conditions were horrible and many people starved. The people were ready for a savior to come and take them out of these conditions. A Paiute named Wovoka promised just that. He announced that he was the Indian messiah and that the Ghost Dance would be their way to salvation. According to Karen M. Stone, "All Indians who danced the Ghost Dance would be taken up into the air and suspended there while the new earth was being laid down. Then they would be replaced there, with the ghosts of their ancestors, on the new earth. Only Indians would live there then." By dancing the Ghost Dance in full view of the whites, Native Americans were expressing their longing for freedom and at the same time announcing that they may be oppressed now, but a new day is coming for them.

Visit this link for more information:

http://www.hanksville.org/daniel/lakota/Ghost_Dance.html

I agree with you...it was definitely a 'revolt'. Do you think that a revolt can be a tactic used by a group of people seeking their survival?

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linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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I think it is more appropriate to say that the Ghost Dance was a means of revolt. You could almost say that it is to the Native American, especially the Plains Indians, what the Passover is to Jews. In the late 1860s, most Native Americans had been forced onto reservations, where living conditions were horrible and many people starved. The people were ready for a savior to come and take them out of these conditions. A Paiute named Wovoka promised just that. He announced that he was the Indian messiah and that the Ghost Dance would be their way to salvation. According to Karen M. Stone, "All Indians who danced the Ghost Dance would be taken up into the air and suspended there while the new earth was being laid down. Then they would be replaced there, with the ghosts of their ancestors, on the new earth. Only Indians would live there then." By dancing the Ghost Dance in full view of the whites, Native Americans were expressing their longing for freedom and at the same time announcing that they may be oppressed now, but a new day is coming for them.

Visit this link for more information:

http://www.hanksville.org/daniel/lakota/Ghost_Dance.html

Yojana_Thapa's profile pic

Yojana_Thapa | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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The ghost dance was a sacred ritual expressing a vision that the buffalo would return and white civilization would vanish. The army attempted to destroy it at Battle of Wounded Knee in 1890, fearing that the ceremony would cause an uprising. 200 Indian men, women, and children were killed!

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