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Short Synopsis
Based upon extensive use of government archives, Indian and teacher autobiographies, and school newspapers, Education for Extinction is essential for scholars and general listeners alike interested in Western history, Native American studies, American race relations, education history, and multiculturalism.

Full Synopsis
The last "Indian War" was fought against Native American children in the dormitories and classrooms of government boarding schools. Only by removing Indian children from their homes for extended periods of time, policymakers reasoned, could white "civilization" take root while childhood memories of "savagism" gradually faded to the point of extinction. In the words of one official: "Kill the Indian and save the man."

This fully revised edition of Education for Extinction offers the only comprehensive account of this dispiriting effort, and incorporates the last twenty-five years of scholarship. Much more than a study of federal Indian policy, this book vividly details the day-to-day experiences of Indian youth living in a "total institution" designed to reconstruct them both psychologically and culturally.

Especially poignant is Adams's description of the ways in which students resisted or accommodated themselves to forced assimilation. Many converted to varying degrees, but others plotted escapes, committed arson, and devised ingenious strategies of passive resistance. He reveals the various ways in which graduates struggled to make sense of their lives and selectively drew upon their school experience in negotiating personal and tribal survival in a world increasingly dominated by white men.

Education for Extinction

American Indians and the Boarding School Experience, 1875-1928

Author David Wallace Adams

Narrated by Paul Boehmer

Publication date Jan 23, 2024

Running time 16 hrs

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