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“We Cannot Be Indifferent”: Native Americans and the Students of the Bethlehem Boarding School

  • Gregory D. Specter
Chapter

Abstract

In this chapter the author draws from extensive research using the Bethlehem Boarding School archives, housed at the Moravian Archives in Bethlehem, PA. Examining the students’ oration of 1793, student records, periodicals, and publishers’ receipts demonstrates that the inclusion of the female students in the 1793 service in the Old Chapel represents an important liminal space of contact between Native Americans and the newly established Republic. The author argues that a collaborative classroom exercise of dialogue and poetry written by the female students, entitled “On the Aborigines of America from Carver, Morse, Smith, and Bartram,” presents a subversive model of white relations with Native Americans that seeks to counter genocidal policies towards America’s indigenous peoples. The students’ oration, which cites numerous injustices culled from personal experience and the readings of books and periodicals, presents an alternative model of Native American and European American relations.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gregory D. Specter
    • 1
  1. 1.Duquesne UniversityPittsburghUSA

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