An Indian in White America

An Indian in White America

by Mark Monroe

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Narrated with intense honesty, this autobiography of Mark Monroe, a Lakota Sioux Indian, is a story of courage, faith, and determination, and a rare opportunity to witness the life of a contemporary American Indian. Despite lifelong confrontations with violence, racism, and personal hardship-alcoholism, family deaths, illness, poverty, and unemployment-Mark Monroe has worked to instill ethnic pride in his fellow Indians.

After an early idyllic childhood at the Rosebud South Dakota reservation, Monroe moved with his parents off-reservation to Alliance, Nebraska. There he first felt the sting of white America's racism from signs outside local businesses that read "No Indians or dogs allowed." As a young man, Monroe enlisted in the military, for the first time experiencing outside acceptance and learning vocational skills. Upon his return to the United States, he worked as a baker. At the same time, however, he was being sucked into a life of alcoholism, begun years earlier with social drinking. Eventually he was unable to eat or to work. After rehabilitation, he ran for Police Magistrate. Monroe was the first Indian ever to have filed for public office in Alliance, and his candidacy divided the town. Though he lost the election, he gained community support and a growing sense of dignity from the campaign.

From the misery and hopelessness he suffered as an alcoholic, and the pains of recovery, Monroe became aware of the cultural difference between Indian alcoholism and white alcoholism. This understanding led to his work with Indian alcoholics at the Panhandle Mental Health Center in Scottsbluff, Nebraska-another first. No Indian had ever served on the Center's staff. Since his recovery, Monroe has been an active participant in his community and continues to fight for the legal rights of American Indians. In 1973 he founded the American Indian Council, which today offers a variety of health, educational, and social programs, including a nutrition program, a hospital busing program, and alcohol counseling.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781439900970
Publisher: Temple University Press
Publication date: 01/30/2009
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Mark Monroe is currently Director of the American Indian Council, Inc., in Alliance. He formerly served as Vice President of the Nebraska Indian Commission and as President of United Indians of Nebraska. He and Carolyn Reyer have been friends since 1982.

Table of Contents

Contents Editor's Preface by Carolyn Reyer Acknowledgments I + Childhood Memories: Wood, South Dakota II + Hard Times: Alliance, Nebraska III + A Second Gunner: Korea IV + First Baker: A Trade and a Family V + An Alcoholic: Losing Evetything VI + A Treatment Failure: Fort Meade VII + Sober Again: A New Life Vlll + An Indian Candidate for Public Office IX + Indigenous Mental Health Worker X + Community Organizer: Programs for Indians XI + The American Indian Council: Speaking for Ourselves XII + Loved Ones: Losses and Recoveries Afterword by Kenneth Lincoln

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