Fools Crow Research Paper
Fools Crow Research Paper “They should have seen it coming”: Irony in James Welch’s Fools Crow High expectations and overconfidence can almost always lead to disappoint. Hindsight biases shed light on the show the clues and signs that made a certain outcome occur before it happened afterward. The hindsight bias is that “l knew it all along’ phenomenon that is only ever stated after all the facts have been presented. The basic example of the hindsight bias is when after seeing the outcome of a possible unforeseeable event a person then believes he or she “knew it all along”.
Historical events upon deep review all show many signs of the ticking bomb that slowly led to what seemed like a spontaneous explosion that underneath have a complex expansive list of motives that provoked it. For instance, Great Depression in review wasn’t one bad stock market crash that spiralled into a huge economic shut down but the result of many factors. Over Speculation of stock and land, overproduction of goods and unregulated banking were Just some of many factors at play that now in hindsight seem like obvious red flags but at the time they went unnoticed by most.
World War One may seem to have been immediately caused by the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand but the long term background of imperialism, militarism, nationalism and intense alliances were really the factors that led up to war, historians and students alike can review information from that time and scholarly work and create a hindsight biased of each factor and what It actually led to yet at the time leading up to actual war It was much harder to tell because the future as so unclear.
The destruction of Native American culture by Invading europeans and the eventual adaptation and simulation of Western culture In indsight was a completely foreseeable and Inevitable tragedy that even the possibility went Ignored until It was far too late. James Welch’s Fools Crow Is an In depth depiction of the Native American lifestyle before and during Western takeover and the various responses of the Natives to Increasing western Involvement In their lives and on their land. Welch tells the well known story of life for an Blackfeet Indian during the war for America In a way that shed a new light on the entire experience.
The book dramatically and effectively overwhelm the reader with a captivating view of Native American culture and more specifically that of the Blackfoot Indians. The Immersion Into Blackfoot culture and the mind of the blackfoot Indians as they are slowly being taken over teaches us the rationality and logic that ultimately proved wrong behind the continued passive behavior and lack of reaction of the Natives to the settlers. The Blackfeet culture and way of life relied heavily on the buffalo. The buffalo provided food, clothing shelter and trade for the people.
Hunting the buffalo and following It;s migrations through the land was how the Blackfeet survived. Once the settlers started to come and take over lands that the buffalo and blackfeet people used the populations were affected drastically “As the buffalo herds decreased and the white population Increased, Blackfeet culture 2) The Buffalo was tne most central ana valued pa rt tnat mace BlacKToot culture ana T II e posslDle and without it the culture would not be able to survive. As the white settlers increase “and more and more of the Napikwans moved onto Pikuni lands. (93) the buffalo population and patterns were changed and ultimately meant arm to the Blackfeet eople that relied on these animals for survival as they were quickly wiped out and relocated to the point where they could no longer support all of the needs of the Blackfeet people. Seth Bovey says in his look at the use of Cattle Ranching in the Fools Crow that “the essential conflict in the plot of Fools Crow is the destruction of Pikuni culture as caused by the apparition of their land”(Bovey 2) As the settlers slowly began to come over the the New World and more and more continued to come their population and presence grew dramatically.
The huge increase in new settler resence that made the blackfeet have to adapt to the loss of things such as the buffalo routes and endless open lands they had been used to. The blackfeet had then been put in a particular difficult situation where there only real options were to continue their life as always but face extreme limitations or adopt some of new settler ways of living and essential lose some of their own culture “either way, the Pikuni loses. (252) Some such as Darin in his look at Intercultural Identity in Fools Crow that “They dea in few luxuries, but mostly these items serve to make life easier. These interactions do not show cultural corruption but the inevitable adaptation to new circumstances and possibilities. ” (Darin 2) Contrary though is the fact that blackfeet culture became more that altered through simple natural adaptation of the new white ways but that they became reliant on their goods and services in a type of dependency that crippled their entire culture.
The blackfeet once the only dominant and prominent people in the soon became the minority with little influence and power ” But you must remember that the Napikwans out number the Pikunis. “(89) The interaction between the blackfeet and the whites was never harmless of simple and because it was not seen as much of a threat to the very foundation of blackfeet culture until it was far too late to repair the damage it had caused the whites were easily able to destroy the Blackfeet culture.
Not everyone in Fools Crow was blind to the take over that was happening subliminally. Characters such as Owl Child, Fast Horse and many elders of the tribes see the destruction and danger for what it was going to inevitably lead to. “The Napikwans are different from us. They would not stop until all the Pikunis had been killed off. (89) but some of these intellectuals had very different approaches as to how their destruction can be prevented.
Rides-at-the- door believed “We must leave them alone, even allow them some our hunting grounds to raise their whitehorns. ” (89) This idea of passive resistance to avoid total destruction too many seem the most effect and peaceful way to avoid disturbances was in fact the exact thing that lead most to the possibility and reality of white domination. Fools Crow wanted to badly to remain apart of Blackfeet culture but still be able to face the new circumstance of the white invasion and he “struggles to adapt and reate an acceptable future. n doing so he grounds himself in a culture identity that remains faithful to traditions while adapting to new circumstances. “(Darin 3) Fools crow see that as the only way of survival for most of the novel. Charles Ballard in his “Questlon 0T survival In tne Fools crow noe tne outllers ano tnelr vlewpolnts 0T tne situation and how to stop a defeat but all too late for anything to change the wheel that already started to turn as Fools Crow finally began to realize the harsh end in sight “the predictions are already beginning to happen. hat events are largely eyond his control, but that the seasonal life of the Pikunis, in spite of the troubling times, is continuing to function. Other character in Fools Crow can’t simultaneously adapt as easily or readily as others so “they breakdown new identities that cannot integrate with either culture. ” these outliers include people such as Fast Horse and Owl Child who resorted to violence to stop the problem with the whites because of the poor results that treaties and passiveness have shown in the past and that seem only to continue to show in the future.
The actions of violence as retaliation to white rongdoings were not solely seen as unreasonable by everyone “The white ones steal our land, they give us trinkets, then they steal more. If Owl child has taken a few of their horses, then he is to honored. “(60) Once it is clear to all that the whites and the blackfeet culture can not coexist in peace and the the whites are fghting for domination not a peaceful partnership the entire mood and tone of the novel shifts.
The characters that once believed in the power of passiveness now are fully aware of the fault in their ways and are still unable to do anything to change their situation Gradually they emerged from the deep void of sickness and death and saw that they had become a different people. “(371) The strain, pain and death that the whites put on the Blackfeet culture changed not Just the lives of those that were lost but also the mentality of the Blackfeet and their hopeful optimism and faith in humanity and decency that before the whites had never truly been tested.
The way of life that once was the Blackfeet culture had been destroyed and a new weaker version was the only thing that remained. The sad ending to a once beautiful way of life is most hardened y the lack of culture left to pass down to any future generations removing all hope of a revival of what once was “l grieve for our children and their children, who will not know the life their people once lived. ” (359) The Whites eliminated the Blackfeet culture, an entire people destroyed by the hands strangers to the land.
In an interview about the book James Welch said “Their a some things that we should never allow people to forget. “(Welch) the loss of an entire culture and way of life is one of those things never to forget especially as an american who live on the land that was iciously bloodily and ruthlessly stolen from it’s original inhabitants. Through Fools Crow Welch is telling the story that everyone knows but many never really have understood or felt a need to understand and he’s so perfectly captivated the reader into feeling as they themselves were blackfeet Indians that lost their culture and way of life.
Welch eloquently gives the reader the ability to in some small way empathises with Native Americans in a very small way with their long ago history. Welch is also using the fact that everyone reading the book has studied Native American history in ome way and know the basics of what really happened to tell them the deeper truth. The book explains the logic and mentality of every kind of Native, those that chose to fght, those that didn’t, those that disturbed their culture and those that remained extremely devoted even until death.