Indian School by Michael L. Cooper
Teaching the White Man's Way

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In 1879 eighty-four Sioux boys and girls became the inaugural group of students to be enrolled at the Carlisle Indian School in Pennsylvania. Carlisle was the first institution opened by the federal government for the education of Native American children. The brainchild of former Indian fighter Captain Richard Pratt, Carlisle, like other schools that followed, was established to teach Indian children the "white man's way." For some, like Olympian Jim Thorpe, Indian School led to success and prosperity, but for many others it was an education in alienation and isolation. Michael L. Cooper examines the Indian Schools and tells the personal stories, often in their own words, of several young students, including Zitkala-Sa, who wrote, "Like a slender tree, I had been uprooted from my mother, nature, and God."

About Michael L. Cooper

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Michael L. Cooper has written books on various aspects of American history for young adults, including a companion book, Fighting for Honor: Japanese Americans and World War II, which was named a 2002 Best Book for Young Adults.
Published September 20, 1999 by Clarion Books. 112 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Education & Reference, Children's Books.

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Although he is guilty of overgeneralizing (in a chapter titled “The Indian Way”—as if there were but one—he states, “When they were teenagers, Native Americans married, had children, and went on the warpath”), the author makes a brave attempt to be evenhanded, balancing the schools’ renowned athl...

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Publishers Weekly

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Cooper (The Double V Campaign: African Americans and World War II) delivers a well-documented and sobering depiction of the late-19th-century military-style boarding schools established to instruct children of various Indian tribes in ""the white man's way."" The author sets the stage in 1879 whe...

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As white settlers moved west in the late 1800s and took over Native American lands, the U.S. government thought that Native American children should attend schools to learn the "white man's way."

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