Boarding School Seasons: American Indian Families, 1900-1940


Product Details

University of Nebraska Press
Publish Date
6.0 X 8.9 X 0.4 inches | 0.6 pounds

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About the Author

Brenda J. Child is an associate professor of American studies at the University of Minnesota.


"An emotional history of American Indian boarding schools in the early twentieth century. The boarding schools were begun in an attempt to 'civilize' Indians but helped develop a sense of Pan-Indian interests by mixing various tribes, languages, and cultures. Child recounts the cultural and emotional toll the schools took on Indian families."
"Brenda J. Child, a Red Lake Ojibwe and a descendant of boarding school students, brings to light previously unpublished archival letters from the Flandreau school in South Dakota and the Haskell Institute in Kansas-letters written by students, parents and administrators. This correspondence chronicles the emotional and cultural impact that boarding schools had on individuals, families and communities. To assess that impact, the author examines several key areas: the effects of separation on children and parents; the dangers of illness; the nature of boarding school work; and the techniques of resistance and rebellion. The author's thoughtful approach and her willingness to let the letter writers tell their own stories allow the complexities and paradoxes of boarding school life to emerge unfettered by historical preconceptions or stereotypes. As a result, the voices of these letters become a testament not to the power of an institution, but to the resourcefulness and resilience of a people."-"Native Peoples,"