The fate of Native Americans has been dependent in large part upon the recognition and enforcement of their legal, political, property, and cultural rights as indigenous peoples by American courts. Most people think that the goal of the judiciary, and especially the US Supreme Court, is to achieve universal notions of truth and justice. In this in-depth examination, however, Walter Echo-Hawk reveals the troubling fact that American law has rendered legal the destruction of Native Americans and their culture. Echo-Hawk analyzes ten cases that embody or expose the roots of injustice and highlight the use of nefarious legal doctrines. He delves into the dark side of the courts, calling for a paradigm shift in American legal thinking. Each case study includes historical, contemporary, and political context from a Native American perspective, and the case's legacy on Native America. In the Courts of the Conqueror is a comprehensive history of Indian Country from a new and unique viewpoint. It is a vital contribution to American history. This edition is in two volumes. The first volume ISBN is 9781459602762.
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Walter R. Echo-Hawk (Pawnee) is of counsel to the Crowe and Dunlevy law firm of Oklahoma. As a staff attorney for the Native American Rights Fund for thirty-five years, he represented tribes and Native Americans on significant legal issues during the modern era of federal Indian law. In addition to litigation, he worked on major legislation, such as the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, and federal religious freedom legislation. He is a prolific writer whose books include the award-winning Battlefields and Burial Grounds.Review:
"A no-holds barred account that deserves wide distribution." Library Journal and School Library Journal
"This weighty text serves as a 'tour of the dark side of the law.' Echo-Hawk, who spent more than three decades at the Native American Rights Fund, exhaustively deconstructs the racist and colonial foundations of federal Indian law. Written in a style that conveys a sense of outrage and passion, the cases highlighted are notable because they represent injustice as well as unfinished business." CHOICE
"Echo-Hawk is methodical and elegant in the way he leads us through the history and case law which has brought us to this point." News From Indian Country
As evidenced by his book In the Courts of the Conqueror,” Mr. Echo-Hawk’s experience, achievement, success and perhaps most importantly, his wisdom, not only serve as a touchstone for legal practitioners, but his work has left an indelible mark upon the lives of those who live and work in Indian Country and for every American who truly values the notion of justice.” Oklahoma City Examiner
Echo-Hawk’s book ought to retire the entire debate about judicial activism. It has become a conservative article of faith that judges should narrowly follow the law when deciding cases. But Echo-Hawk methodically picks apart that fiction.” —Mark Trahant, New West
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