CULTURAL READINGS: Colonization & Print in the Americas
|COLONIAL FICTIONS, COLONIAL HISTORIES
|In many native cultures, capturing people rather than territory was the principal end of warfare. Captives were taken for purposes of adoption, execution, or ransom. For their part, Europeans captured Indians to use as soldiers, guides, interpreters, and slaves.|
Narratives of Europeans or white Americans held captive among Indians were in circulation as early as the 16th century. Cabeza de Vaca's relation of his shipwreck in Florida may be the earliest such account to be printed.
In the 17th century, Catholic readers learned of the captivity of Isaac Jogues among the Iroquois, while Mary Rowlandson, a Puritan, composed her own account of captivity among tribes resisting English colonialism. Later editions of tales like that of Rowlandson became American bestsellers, spawning a market for printed captivities.
Colonial Fictions, Colonial Histories
|Exhibition Contents | Introduction | Essays | Bibliography & Links|
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