Jeffrey Ostler’s Surviving Genocide: Native Nations and the United States from the American Revolution to Bleeding Kansas (Yale University Press, 2019) is the first of what will be a two-volume set that comprehensively chronicles the devastating effects of U.S. expansionism on Native Nations. Surviving Genocide covers the eastern United States from the 1750s to the start of the Civil War. In it Ostler makes the compelling argument that American democracy relied on Indian dispossession and what officials claimed to be “just and lawful” wars to remove and kill Indians who resisted. Importantly, Ostler’s book documents the resilience of Native people, showing how they survived genocide in the face of serious and diverse threats to their existence.
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