A Son of the Forest and Other Writings
This book brings together the best-known works of the 19th-century Indian writer William Apess, including the first extended autobiography by a Native American. The text is drawn from ON OUR OWN GROUND, which was named a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Book. This new edition of Apess's classic texts is designed for classroom use .
Paperback, 146 pages
Published November 1st 1997 by Univ of Massachusetts Pr
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Feb 25, 2014 Jessica Journey rated it 3 of 5 stars
I read this for my 3300 American Lit Survey class. It definitely isn't the most interesting book in the world. However, it is a wonderful rebuke of the Native American stereotypes I've grown up seeing in pictures, that which depict the "noble savage." Here we have a highly articulate "Son of the Forest" who is serious about his Christian faith and unafraid to tell other "Christians" that base salvation on skin color that they're doing it wrong. Cool read for my collection.
Genre seems to be a key point in this text-- is it a slave narrative, a conversion narrative, an autobiography? Part of the genius of the work is that it pulls from multiple literary spaces and thus keeps the audience guessing.
Sep 30, 2011 Lani rated it 2 of 5 stars
Apess makes several good points about the hardships of being a Native American in 19th century America, but it's so overshadowed by evangelical Christian writing that it was impossible for me to enjoy his memoir at all.