By Charles Brockden Brown
One of many first American Gothic novels, Edgar Huntly (1787) mirrors the social and political temperaments of the postrevolutionary United States.
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Extra resources for Edgar Huntly or, Memoirs of a Sleep-Walker: Or, Memoirs of a Sleep-Walker (Penguin Classics)
The connection – such as it is – that Momaday oﬀers readers exists within the text and its expressed ideas. He has gone on record stating that he provides enough information for readers to understand his works fully. He considers them self-contained: “I don’t think it’s necessary to read beyond what I have written because I have tried to provide the necessary information” (Isernhagen, Momaday, Vizenor, Armstrong 33). Although he recognizes that readers might beneﬁt from a familiarity with tribal cultures, he does not require readers to become avid students of tribal beliefs and customs.
S. hypocrisy, greed, and racism, but it is also an essential backdrop and context for reading Native American literature. Even when not mentioned explicitly, the history is never far below the surface. Trail of broken treaties The ﬁrst treaty was signed with the Delaware (Lenape) in 1778 during the American Revolution. S. The Delaware signed 18 subsequent treaties that essentially took their land and relocated tribal members from the eastern seaboard to Canada and Oklahoma (Nabokov, Native American Testimony 119).
If the novel represents a Native journey toward a usable identity,9 the process is kept somewhat obscure. 10 The omission appears intentional. When asked about his reaction to Maori writers who create cultural barriers for readers, Momaday responded: “I like the idea of using a kind of special diction or information, and I am not quite sure that it needs to be understood, that one needs to track it down and ﬁnd it out. I think it’s nice that occasionally you come across something in writing that you don’t understand” (Isernhagen, Momaday, Vizenor, Armstrong 33).
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