This book examines how the United States government, through the lens of presidential leadership, has tried to come to grips with the many and complex issues pertaining to relations with Indigenous peoples, who occupied the land long before the Europeans arrived. The historical relationship between the US government and Native American communities reflects many of the core contradictions and difficulties the new nation faced as it tried to establish itself as a legitimate government and fend off rival European powers, including separation of powers, the role of Westward expansion and Manifest Destiny, and the relationship between diplomacy and war in the making of the United States. The authors’ analysis touches on all US presidents from George Washington to Donald Trump, with sections devoted to each president. Ultimately, they consider what historical and contemporary relations between the government and native peoples reveal about who we are and how we operate as a nation.
Michael A. Genovese is President of the Global Policy Institute at Loyola Marymount University, USA.
Alysa Landry is Assistant Professor of English at Diné College, Arizona, USA.