Article Analysis Essay on "Alcatraz, Wounded Knee, and Beyond" by Dean Kotlowski

Published: 2023-01-28
Article Analysis Essay on "Alcatraz, Wounded Knee, and Beyond" by Dean Kotlowski
Type of paper:  Literature review
Categories:  American history
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 720 words
6 min read

The chosen article for this prompt is "Alcatraz, Wounded Knee, and Beyond: The Nixon and Ford Administrations Respond to Native American Protest" written by Kotlowski, Dean in the year 2003. This academic journal will be reviewing the different areas that the author focused on examining the subject of study.

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The primary purpose of the author in writing the article is to inform the audience about the changes that took place after the Indian Americans evacuated from the Alcatraz highland. It is an article that the author wants to describe the events that led to the change of policy in America regarding Indian rights. The author keenly shows the Alcatraz as a turning point for the shift in American policy to favor Indian Americans. Kotlowski (200) explains the sympathetic reaction of the American leaders during the 1969 to 1977 period. The occupation of the Alcatraz island by Indian Americans made the current leaders in America, including Nixon and Ford, do away with the termination policy. The two presidents replaced it with the self-determination rule that would respect the rights of the Indian Americans (Kotlowski 202).

The central thesis of the article is that the grass-roots protests at Alcatraz highland assisted Indian Americans in pushing the executive branch of the government in responding sympathetically to the concerns of Native Americans. The author carefully challenges other historical viewpoints by noting the main gaps that the current study was addressing. According to Kotlowski (203), other researchers in the subject had failed to explore the policies of President Gerald Ford. The author notes that there is little attention provided to the connection between the protest of Native Americans as well as the federal policy. Furthermore, past historical viewpoints have not covered the American protests under the ruling of Ford. Through the use of quotes and showing their differences with the current approach of the study, Kotlowski (205) challenges other historical viewpoints. The author examines how other researchers failed to show the differences of unrest between the two rulings of Ford and Nixon.

The evidence used in the article entails direct quotes from different historians that covered the subject of study. For instance, the author quotes the findings of historians such as Vine Deloria, Jr., and the exact words of the leaders during their declaration to honor the rights of all Americans as citizens with equal rights. These forms of evidence are necessary for understanding the topic clearly and from initial quotes from the owners of information presented in the article.

I feel that the article did not use the appropriate structure to explore the subject of study. The reader wanders from one page to the other get the main point of the study. The author did not introduce the topic of research but went directly to describing events that took place during the historical aspect. Even though the purpose of the study is well stated, I do not like how the researcher approached the flow of content. However, I like the topic and the immediate abstract that gives the reader a first idea of what the article entails. The author can improve the work to become stronger by providing a clear structure of the content. For instance, the researcher can give clear sections of the work to identify one idea to another.

The recommended audience for the article includes students studying American history, historians to investigate the subject in the future and those with an interested in learning about American history in the 1960s and 10970s. The article contributes to understanding the history of America by explaining the change from one president to another and the type of policies they refuted and implemented during their leadership. When reviewing Eric Foner's book, "Give Me Liberty," one can say that this article supports the views of Eric Foner on the aspect of freedom. Based on the article findings, the Indian Americans were seeking a change of policy that denied their freedom in America as citizens with equal rights. The self-determination policy implemented by Ford and Nixon during their ruling would guarantee Indian Americans of their rights to own land and vote as American citizens.

Work Cited

Kotlowski, Dean. "Alcatraz, Wounded Knee, and Beyond: The Nixon and Ford Administrations Respond to Native American Protest." Pacific Historical Review, vol. 72, No. 2 (2003), pp. 201-227. University of California Press: Accessed: 21-04-2017.

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Article Analysis Essay on "Alcatraz, Wounded Knee, and Beyond" by Dean Kotlowski. (2023, Jan 28). Retrieved from

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