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Unformatted text preview: Black Elk Speaks depicts the tragedy of a culture that can no longer support its traditional ideals. In their own terms, the Sioux have lost the sacred hoop of their nation. But they did not lose it through a lack of faith or other internal weakness; they lost it, almost inevitably, to the forces of economic greed when white Americans expanded westward in search of more land and more goods. Their culture is lost through the loss of the traditions and lifestyle that Black Elk commemorates. The end of the traditional Sioux hunting practices is a striking example of the loss of culture. The bison, an abundant source of food that was a daily reminder of the providence of the Great Spirit, were considered sacred. The bison roamed the prairie in what seemed to be a never-ending supply. Even the Transcontinental Railroad's separation of the herd into two halves, when Black Elk was still...
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This note was uploaded on 11/29/2011 for the course ENG 101 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Texas State.
- Fall '08