Nicholas Black Elk (1863-1950) is arguably the best known and most influential Native American of the twentieth century. His story and teachings, first recorded by John G. Neihardt in "Black Elk Speaks", have played a critical role in shaping the way in which Native Americans and others view the past, present, and future of Native America. What has happened to Black Elk's world and family since the Lakota holy man spoke to Neihardt? Here, for the first time, the descendants of Black Elk tell us about their lives and their people and how the legacy of Black Elk affects them today. These conversations offer an intimate look at life on the Pine Ridge Reservation and fresh perspectives on the religious, economic, and political opportunities and challenges facing the Lakota people in the twenty-first century. In addition to learning more about Black Elk the healer, the family also provide glimpses of Black Elk as a family man, teacher, and influential ancestor. These insightful conversations make clear that the legacy of Black Elk is very much alive today. Esther Black Elk DeSersa and Olivia Black Elk Pourier are the granddaughters of Nicholas Black Elk. Aaron DeSersa Jr. and Clifton DeSersa are the great-grandsons of Black Elk.
Descendants of Black Elk tell of their lives and his legacy
"It is an eloquent description of the lives of the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the Lakota holy man responsible for Black Elk Speaks, a classic of anthropology and religious studies. We learn how these descendants live and how their famous ancestor still shapes their worldviews. The title also reminds us that their famous forebear still lives, in the legacy of his book and through his descendants. Compelling interviews of the Black Elk family, edited by Hilda Neihardt, daughter of Black Elk's editor, make up the book's contents and demonstrate Black Elk's continuing relevance... This fascinating and powerful document offers myriad insights into Lakota religion and life." Booklist "Through much of the text, the authors--granddaughters and great-grandsons of Black Elk--weave together the past, present, and future of the Lakota people and demonstrate that Black Elk's vision is still very much with them. Highly recommended for all public and academic libraries." Library Journal