What Is Franklin's Argument in "Remarks Concerning the Savages of North America"? What Examples Does He Provide to Prove This Argument?

Topics: Native Americans in the United States, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson Pages: 2 (652 words) Published: September 9, 2012
“Remarks concerning the savages of North America " is a part of Early American Literature that highlights Franklin's criticism of the Native Americans being referred to as savages. This essay is based on Franklin’s experiences with the social and cultural nature of the Native Americans. Franklins description of native life are described in such a way as to emphasize some of the failings of his own western society. This essay was written in 1784. In this remarkable essay Franklin makes observations on how the society of Native Americans differs from that of white English America. The main point that Franklin was aiming for is that Native Americans are anything but savages. Franklin wanted to convince people that just because a culture is different than our own does not mean they are savages and unclean. He even goes as far in his arguments to say that in some respects, the native American culture and people are more polite than the British.

Throughout the entire document it gives example after example of ways the Indians respect the white peoples values and cultures and in return and in return the Americans believe the Indians values are barbaric. Benjamin Franklin was explaining the differences between the Indians and the Americans and asking, why should the Native Americans be called savages just because their lifestyle is different than others. One of the first examples given was, in 1744 at the Treaty of Lancaster the Six Nations thought it would be a good idea to make a proposal asking the Indians to send some of their young men to college in Virginia so they could teach them the lifestyle that the Americans know and practice. Ben Franklin wanted to represent the Native American people as smart and educated, just not in the same way the British were used to. The Indians had no police or anyone to govern their tribes and nobody to punish them. Ben Franklin made quite a few observations in this essay. The first one he spoke of was a...
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