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Standing Up to Colonial Power: The Lives of Henry Roe and Elizabeth Bender Cloud

Univ. of Nebraska. Dec. 2018.. 304p. 9781496211729. BIOG
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Ramirez (anthropology, Univ. of California, Santa Cruz; Native Hubs) has deeply researched her own history in writing this biography of her grandparents Henry Roe Cloud (1884–1950) and Elizabeth Bender Roe Cloud (1887–1965). Drawing upon family archives, the author illuminates their careers and lives as instrumental in the development of federal American Indian policy in mid-20th-century America. Henry Cloud, of the Ho-Chunk tribe, was the sole Native American member of Lewis Meriam's committee, which surveyed American Indian socioeconomic conditions in the 1920s. The committee's report laid the groundwork for the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934. Henry later became a reformer superintendent of Haskell Indian Nations University in Kansas and subsequently Superintendent of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Oregon. Elizabeth, an Ojibwe, became active in national organizations such as General Federation of Women's Clubs and the National Congress of American Indians.
VERDICT At once a personal and professional take on the complexities of traditionalist vs. assimilationist politics at both tribal and federal levels, this family history relates the Clouds' experience with institutional racism and federal policies of settler colonialism. Recommended for all interested in Native American studies.

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