CliffsNotes Neihardt's Black Elk Speaks by Diane Prenatt

By Diane Prenatt

Black Elk Speaks is the tale of Nicholas Black Elk, Lakota visionary and healer, and his humans on the shut of the 19th century. Black Elk grew up in a time whilst white settlers have been invading his place of origin, slaughtering buffalo herds, and perilous the Lakotas' lifestyle. Celebrated poet and author John G. Neidhart tells this tale of ways the Lakotas' fought again from the triumph at Little Bighorn to the tragedy at Wounded Knee. Black Elk Speaks has been considered as a collaborative autobiography, a historical past of a local American country, and a religious testomony for all humankind.
This concise complement to Neihardt's Black Elk Speaks is helping scholars comprehend the general constitution of the unconventional, activities and motivations of the characters, and the social and cultural views of the author.

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Extra info for CliffsNotes Neihardt's Black Elk Speaks

Sample text

Iron Hawk rides back to the scene of battle where it is difficult to tell who is winning. When it is dark, they ride back to camp to guard the women and children, and the whites do not follow. Standing Bear adds to the report. He was one of many who were not in the fight. The next day, they rode out to the scene of the battle and dug up the white soldiers’ bodies and took the blankets they were buried in; he himself cut the finger off a dead man to take his ring. ” One of the Indians scalped a body.

A Lakota shoots a white man (probably Captain French, Neihardt notes) who was very brave. Black Elk is ordered to scalp a man who is down, and Black Elk shoots him in the forehead. Far off, Indian warriors are in a whirl of dust; Custer has attacked from the north end, Neihardt notes. Black Elk goes home to show his mother his first scalp. Standing Bear adds to the story: Sixteen years old at the time, he was in the Minneconjou camp, the third from the south of the seven Indian camps along the Little Big Horn River.

He has been friendly to Black Elk, calling him into his tepee. Wounded only twice, he is a powerful warrior. Black Elk states that if the whites had not murdered Crazy Horse, the Indians would still own the Black Hills. The whites did not kill Crazy Horse in battle, but lied to entrap him. When Black Elk’s people meet up with Crazy Horse, they camp some distance away and build a corral to guard their ponies from the Crow Indians. But, still, a Crow is caught attempting to steal a horse in the dead of the night, and then killed.

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