From the war to diplomacy: roles of native american women on the american frontier
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Keywords

Native American women, frontier, american-indian relations, Toby Winema Riddle, Prefrontier, warrior-woman, the Modoc war, Sarah Winnemucca, Paiute, diplomacy, Postfrontier.

How to Cite

1. Якушенкова О. From the war to diplomacy: roles of native american women on the american frontier // Journal of Frontier Studies. 2017. № 2. C. 107-119.

Abstract

The dramatic events occurring on the American frontier radically changed the role of Native American women in a traditional society. Based on the concept of a tripartite division of the Frontier on the special stages of the Genesis of this complex phenomenon, the author shows how the position of Native woman had changed, and as she was gradually forced to change her status, to move to new roles in the Native society. Taking as an example the fate of several representatives of various Native tribes, the author shows how the traditional status of Indian woman was supplemented with new functions. First of all, these functions were connected with the military events on the frontier when the American army tried to break the resistance of Native American tribes, driving them into reservations. Indian women were forced to take up arms and to defend their people. Not an inherent function of the warrior was forced on her by the events of this period. And, in many cases, she coped well with this task.

But being a mediator by her nature, a Native woman began to function in new period as a facilitator, a diplomat and a communicator between the worlds of the White man and Native Americans. The change of status roles by the Native women was associated also with getting her a European education that gave her many new advantages and in some cases has opened new opportunities for her to be accepted by both Worlds.

The onset of the period postfrontier led to the fact that Frontier Native women fulfilled another important frontier mission – to be in a head of some civilizational processes. They were brilliant propagandists of the cultural heritage of their peoples among the white population of the United States.

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