In a groundbreaking book that challenges familiar narratives of discontinuity, disease-based demographic collapse, and acculturation, Michael V. Wilcox upends many deeply held assumptions about native peoples in North America. His provocative book poses the question, What if we attempted to explain their presence in contemporary society five hundred years after Columbus instead of their disappearance or marginalization? Wilcox looks in particular at the 1680 Pueblo Revolt in colonial New Mexico, the most successful indigenous rebellion in the Americas, as a case study for dismantling the mythology of the perpetually vanishing Indian. Bringing recent archaeological findings to bear on traditional historical accounts, Wilcox suggests that a more profitable direction for understanding the history of Native cultures should involve analyses of issues such as violence, slavery, and the creative responses they generated.
Michael V. Wilcox is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Stanford University.
“Infinitely more compelling than the lessons we’re taught in school.”—Stanford Report
“A deeply analytical work which gives a well-researched view of the various Spanish entradas, interactions between the Spanish and Pueblo people, and Pueblo activities.”—Pasatiempo
“An important contribution to the disciplines of archaeology and history.”—SMRC Revista
“It is an ambitious undertaking with the welcome prospect of revisionist insight into the history of contact and colonial settlement in northern New Spain and seems to contain at least the potential for broadening the scope of the New Conquest History genre.”—Susan Schroeder The Americas
"Wilcox shows that archaeology can provide information that the historic record is either silent or incorrect on."—Joe Watkins, author of Indigenous Archaeology
"In this groundbreaking book, Michael Wilcox debunks the myth of the vanishing Indian by employing a new vision for the practice of indigenous archaeology that writes Indians back into local histories and into the present."—Kent Lightfoot, author of Indians, Missionaries, and Merchants