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Prison Writings: My Life Is My Sun Dance by…

Prison Writings: My Life Is My Sun Dance (original 1999; edition 1999)

by Leonard Peltier

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378745,437 (3.8)5
Edited by Harvey Arden, with an Introduction by Chief Arvol Looking Horse, and a Preface by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark. In 1977, Leonard Peltier received a life sentence for the murder of two FBI agents. He has affirmed his innocence ever since--his case was made fully and famously in Peter Matthiessen's bestsellingIn the Spirit of Crazy Horse--and many remain convinced he was wrongly convicted.Prison Writingsis a wise and unsettling book, both memoir and manifesto, chronicling his life in Leavenworth Prison in Kansas. Invoking the Sun Dance, in which pain leads one to a transcendent reality, Peltier explores his suffering and the insights it has borne him. He also locates his experience within the history of the American Indian peoples and their struggles to overcome the federal government's injustices.… (more)
Title:Prison Writings: My Life Is My Sun Dance
Authors:Leonard Peltier
Info:St Martins Pr (1999), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 256 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:NON-CIRCULATING, from Hackley Public Library

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Prison Writings: My Life is My Sun Dance by Leonard Peltier (1999)

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Review: Prison Writings by Leonard Pelter.

A memoir that is interesting with some embedded history of a man, Leonard Pelter that was found guilty by officials and the courts. This book is about how over time he accepted his life in prison after many appeals because he claims he is innocent of murdering two FBI agents in 1977. He feels his race as a Native American is the real reason he still sits in prison and not home on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

As you followed Leonard Pelter on his journey with Indian issues by joining the AIM (American Indian Movement) to defend the rights of his people but it did no good. He has experience intense fear, sad disappointment, racism, lost family members, and stripped of all his rights, yet in this book he accounts his shortcomings extensively with a quiet quest throughout the book and talks with a soft tone and is not bitter.

He even talks about how US Presidents would not give him a pardon, yet he still has hope and shows great appreciation to his fellow supporters. I think it will be up to the readers to make their own opinions about if he is guilty and not guilty. It’s a heartfelt story that even in today’s society racism is still being used unfairly…. ( )
  Juan-banjo | Sep 23, 2019 |
There is something very moving in this book, which is a testimony of a life. And it isn't the mere chain of events that brought a man in prison in spite of his innocence. It is the strength that oozes from every page, Peltier's simple and yet shockingly strong act of resistance: refusing to become a victim. Be true to himself, to his beliefs, to his people. The act of choosing who he is and will be, no matter who others try to turn him into.
I'm happy I read it. ( )
  JazzFeathers | Jul 27, 2016 |
This is a poignant and truth filled book written by Leonard Peltier, who is still incarcerated unjustly by the federal government for a crime they admit he did not commit.

Leonard tells of the events leading up to his unjust incarceration, the many attempts made on his life by the feds while being incarcerated, and his undying faith in Tunkashila (Creator) and his life on this here Canka Luta Waste (Good Red Road).

Leonard Peltier is a hero in no uncertain terms.

Mi Takuye Oyacin ( )
  Auntie-Nanuuq | Jan 18, 2016 |
Inevitably, even reviewing Peltier's words turns into a platform for debate about his innocence. I feel like that is secondary here. What we have is a voice who grieves for the suffering of his people and for Native people across the world. His voice is mournful, and it is painfully human. However, it is also a voice filled with strength and resolve. A courageous voice, yet a humble one, reaching out from beyond cold steel and cement to whoever may listen with a plea that is not so much on behalf of himself as it is on behalf of his people. It is a plea to bring justice and fairness and true reparations to American Indians. A moving work of memoir.

As for Peltier's alleged crime, his trial was unfair regardless, with too other men who were there with him in the exact same situation having been acquitted and the evidence used to acquit them having been unjustly withheld from Peltier's trial. The government needed, and procured, their scapegoat. Even assuming Peltier is guilty of killing those officers, I can't say I wouldn't have done the same thing if I was being pursued without reason and people all around me, people I knew and cherished, were being indiscriminately shot dead on the pretense of one man stealing some cowboy boots. I have a sneaking suspicion that many who condemn Peltier hypocritically vindicate the likes of George Zimmerman ... ( )
2 vote poetontheone | Jul 1, 2015 |
This book wasn't very well written and as the story progressed, it because more obvious that Peltier was guilty of killing the federal agents. He denies the crime throughout the book but came off much like Ted Bundy in "Conversations With a Killer". He too maintained his innocence but gave away too much in the telling of the story.

It's true that Native Americans are still suffering but they would do better to try to improve their situations like the Choctaw did than to rally behind a murderous, revolutionary felon. Leonard Peltier is no leader and does not deserve the accolades that he has been given. ( )
  jimocracy | Apr 18, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Leonard Peltierprimary authorall editionscalculated
Arden, HarveyEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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