Cultural Experiences

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SYNTHESIS ESSAY
Brandon Carter
02/12/13
Period 3

Writers have long written about their cultural experiences, so much that they have become speakers for their culture. Chief Joseph, of the Nez Perce, is one of them. He shares his struggles of being forced from his homeland to a reservation, miniscule is size compared to his original safe haven. He shows the emotional undertakings that he endured through his speech I Will Fight No More. In said speech, Chief Joseph sued imagery to show the physical and mental hardships all native tribes had to undergo.

Chief Joseph’s background influenced his writing by making it personal. For instance, as an infant on a reservation Joseph gained his “Christian name” when missionaries baptized him. From this point, he was stripped of his cultural identity. He expresses this feeling in his speech when he says, “My people… have run away to the hills and have no blankets, no food.” Chief Joseph has gone through such struggle that it was declared ”according to his doctor ‘of a broken heart.’” The settlers destroyed the culture and this personalized his writing by showing his concern for his people.

From the day Columbus landed in the Americas, nothing but pain has come to all Native American tribes, the Nez Perce people in particular. “With the influx of minors the government ordered the Nez Perce bands led by Chief Joseph, Chief Looking Glass, and Chief White Bird to relocate the new reservation.” The previous land that the tribe was living on was revoked to use for mines and they had to move again. “Joseph's fame did him little good… Joseph and his people were instead taken first to eastern Kansas and then to a reservation in Indian Territory where many of them died of epidemic diseases” The harsh weather and constant relocation caused many deaths on fatigued Native Americans. This was lamented in the speech with, “our chiefs are killed, Looking Glass is dead”.

There are still many Native Americans living on...
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