THE VANISHING WHITE MAN by Stan Steiner

THE VANISHING WHITE MAN

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The author of The New Indians (1968) has learned to examine himself and his culture in the unflattering mirror of the Indian point of view; here he holds up that mirror to American society at large. He is, of course, stomping on well-trodden ground; the Indian point of view, as eloquently stated by the original spokesmen, has been made redundantly available by publishers--all part of the white fad and fantasy for things native which Steiner analyzes. We have read many times that the white man has broken the Circle of Life and raped his Mother Earth and is going to pay heavily for it. And we have read clearer analyses than Steiner's of the sexual myths of the frontier. But Steiner still makes some good points in popularly accessible form. One is that the Indians' ancient ""religion"" is a reverent and precise description of the energy dynamics our science is only beginning to understand. Another is his inventory of the skills and ideas the early colonists learned from their native hosts and teachers, some of which still hold the power to surprise. And another is just how explicitly the Nixon administration was involved in the corporate rape of the West, which is well on the way to destroying America for all of us. It's to Steiner's credit that he includes the testimony of other Western voices: a Hopi elder, a thoughtful young Indian activist, a white Montana rancher, Senator Abourezk of South Dakota, Black Elk's granddaughter, and others. A bit of a rehash, but a decent introduction for people just waking up to yesterday's news.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1976
Publisher: Harper & Row