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First AmericansU.S. Patriotism in Indian Country after World War I$
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Thomas Grillot

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780300224337

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300224337.001.0001

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Bad Boys, Forgotten Heroes

Bad Boys, Forgotten Heroes

(p.123) Chapter Four Bad Boys, Forgotten Heroes
First Americans

Thomas Grillot

Yale University Press

This chapter switches perspective again and takes as its object the veterans themselves. When looked at through an ethnographical lens, World War I veterans appear to have been ambiguous heroes on reservations. They were honored but at the same time elicited mistrust, jealousy, and attempts on the part of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, as well as on the part of their own communities, to control and direct their behavior. Honoring veterans was an opportunity to reaffirm community bonds and bolster Indians' status vis-à-vis whites. But celebrations could also be rituals to manage fears and distrust toward the veterans themselves. Thus, their identity as a group developed as much from local cultural traditions as from this ambivalent position on reservations, alternately central and marginal.

Keywords:   World War I veterans, Bureau of Indian Affairs, cultural traditions, Indian veterans, Indian families, Indian communities, war heroes, BIA

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