“When we lose cultures, we lose American plurality—the productive and lovely discomfort that true difference brings.”
DAVID TREUER, REZ LIFE: AN INDIAN’S JOURNEY THROUGH RESERVATION LIFE
David Treuer, a member of the Ojibwe tribe, combines history and memoir to create the National Book Award Finalist, New York Times bestseller, and multiple Best Books of 2019 list-maker, The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee: Native America from 1890 to the Present.
Growing up Ojibwe on the Leech Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota, David Treuer struggled with popular depictions of Native American history, many of which conclude that his culture was a relic of the past. Treuer knew that Native American history did not end with a battle in 1890. In both fiction and nonfiction, Treuer has spent his career dissecting narratives around Native American life. The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee tells the sweeping story of the tribes’ distinctive cultures from their first contact with settlers, exploring how each era spawned new modes of survival. Treuer traces how each generation endured, from devastating land seizures to forced assimilation and conscription, to develop their own form of resistance and renewal.
Treuer is the author of Prudence, The Translation of Dr. Apelles, The Hiawatha, Little, Rez Life, and Native American Fiction: A User’s Manual. His essays and stories have appeared in Granta, Harper’s, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Esquire, Slate, and The Washington Post. The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee was a National Book Award Finalist and longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal of Excellence.
The New Yorker, February 2019
Time Magazine, January 2019
The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee Author David Treuer on Why We Need to Change the Way Indian Stories Are Told
Free Library of Philadelphia podcast, March 2019
“An informed, moving, and kaleidoscopic portrait… Treuer’s powerful book suggests the need for soul-searching about the meanings of American history and the stories we tell ourselves about this nation’s past.”