A thoroughly researched but plodding account of the clash of two implacably incompatible cultures.




Cultural historian Hutton (History/Univ. of New Mexico; Phil Sheridan and His Army, 1985, etc.) presents the sorry history of white America's persecution of the ferocious tribe that consistently returned their ill treatment measure for measure.

The story can be quickly summarized. In the early 1860s, a band of reservation Apaches was infuriated by yet another venal betrayal by genocidal white authorities. Under a series of leaders, they slipped away to roam the canyons of Arizona and New and Old Mexico, stealing livestock and gruesomely torturing and killing settlers. The U.S. Army pursued them, both sides suffered casualties, and the surviving Apaches, weary of the chase, surrendered to return to the reservation. Repeat periodically for 35 years until much of the tribe was exiled to Oklahoma. Felix Ward, the Irish/Mexican "captive boy" later known as Mickey Free, is the thread that runs throughout the narrative. Raised as an Apache, he spent much of his adult life working as a reservation policeman and scout for the Army, in which capacities he appears during much of this history without disclosing any sense of his personality. This is equally true of Hutton's vast cast of characters—native, Hispanic, and Anglo—who largely fail to emerge as distinct individuals. The accounts of armed conflict are stirringly told and often read like a Western thriller, but there are too many, with no sense of proportion; it seems there is no raid, patrol, or skirmish too minor to draw Hutton's attention. Furthermore, the author explains little of the culture of the geographically fragmented Apache people. The narrative unfolds almost entirely from an Anglo perspective, but very few individuals of any ethnicity emerge in a favorable light, with the possible exception of those Apaches who wished only to live quietly in whatever wasteland the whites most recently assigned to them.

A thoroughly researched but plodding account of the clash of two implacably incompatible cultures.

Pub Date: May 3, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-7704-3581-3

Page Count: 528

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Feb. 10, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2016

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...


Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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For Howard Zinn, long-time civil rights and anti-war activist, history and ideology have a lot in common. Since he thinks that everything is in someone's interest, the historian—Zinn posits—has to figure out whose interests he or she is defining/defending/reconstructing (hence one of his previous books, The Politics of History). Zinn has no doubts about where he stands in this "people's history": "it is a history disrespectful of governments and respectful of people's movements of resistance." So what we get here, instead of the usual survey of wars, presidents, and institutions, is a survey of the usual rebellions, strikes, and protest movements. Zinn starts out by depicting the arrival of Columbus in North America from the standpoint of the Indians (which amounts to their standpoint as constructed from the observations of the Europeans); and, after easily establishing the cultural disharmony that ensued, he goes on to the importation of slaves into the colonies. Add the laborers and indentured servants that followed, plus women and later immigrants, and you have Zinn's amorphous constituency. To hear Zinn tell it, all anyone did in America at any time was to oppress or be oppressed; and so he obscures as much as his hated mainstream historical foes do—only in Zinn's case there is that absurd presumption that virtually everything that came to pass was the work of ruling-class planning: this amounts to one great indictment for conspiracy. Despite surface similarities, this is not a social history, since we get no sense of the fabric of life. Instead of negating the one-sided histories he detests, Zinn has merely reversed the image; the distortion remains.

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1979

ISBN: 0061965588

Page Count: 772

Publisher: Harper & Row

Review Posted Online: May 26, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 1979

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