Black Elk Speaks
Social Ethics in Black Elk Speaks by John NeihardtName: Institution: Abstract Literature is a reflection of society. It provides an account of the experiences and struggles of people in a particular period. In America, the contemporary readers have used ancient works of literature to understand their history. These writings are based on what the authors felt, saw or experienced during their time. The periods of colonization and slavery, in particular, documents two of the most important periods in the American history. Stories that were written during this time conveyed messages of oppression, conflict, hatred and social injustices. Black Elk Speaks perfectly fits this category. The novel records the life of Sioux’s holy man (Black Elk) from 1863 (the time he was born) to 1890 (the period of the Wounded Knee Massacre, an experience that ended the tribe’s hopes of returning to their normal lives). Through there interaction with the Europeans, the aspect of social ethics is strongly highlighted in the life of Black Elk. Therefore, this study explores the issue of social ethics in the conflict between the European invaders and the cultures of Black Elk and his tribesmen. Key Words: Sioux, Black Elk, Europeans, Social Ethics Social Ethics in Black Elk Speaks by John NeihardtThesis Statement Black Elk Speaks is a personal account. It has the distinctiveness of several genres: elegy, autobiography, and testimonial. However, the account of the narrator (Black Elk) presents a picture of the Sioux people during a…
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