This book is the powerful story of the ongoing struggle of indigenous
Americans in the twentieth century United States and of its shift in focus
from traditional battlefield and massacre sites to federal courtrooms
and the halls of Congress.
The Politics of Hallowed Ground includes excerpts from the diary
kept by Mario Gonzalez, the attorney for the Sioux Nation in its struggle
for recognition of the Wounded Knee Massacre site as a national monument.
Gonzalez's personal record of the struggle is coupled with commentary
by Elizabeth Cook-Lynn, a Native American writer who places the work in
its historical context. Together, the two voices will draw the reader
into far more than the continuing struggle of the Sioux people to achieve
The book covers Sioux history from before the Wounded Knee tragedy to
modern times, through the Sioux Nation's long and often rancorous dialogue
with the U.S. government over control of South Dakota's Black Hills, traditional
Sioux lands recognized by treaty in 1877 and never forfeited or sold.
After reading a 13-year-old survivor's narrative of what happened at Wounded
Knee and the list of the dead and wounded, readers will find it difficult
not to share the Sioux perspective.
"Provocative and compelling with its raw incisive written commentary
by a man who is trained as a lawyer but still views his world through
tribal lenses." -- Leonard R. Bruguier, Director of the Institute
of American Indian Studies, University of South Dakota
"By far the most moving, most compelling book I have read about
the Sioux and their ongoing struggle to come to grips with history. Gonzalez
and Cook-Lynn let us see the gut-wrenching realities that people who work
to make a difference face." - Robert Allen Warrior, author of Tribal
Secrets: Recovering American Indian Intellectual Traditions