Red Cloud spoke from a particular Assiniboine conception of the tribal land during the period of intertribal wars prior to the establishment of the reservation system, when these boundaries were hotly contested with the neighboring (Atsinas) Gros Ventre and Lakota people.
He empowered and legitimized Assiniboine identity and political power, denying Sioux (and perhaps Gros Ventre) claims to the tribal territory.
(17.) "Welch, after all, is Gros Ventre and Piegan (Blackfeet) by Indian heritage, and he lived for some time with his grandparents on the Fort Belknap Reservation, where the Gros Ventres are now located.
Cooper, The Gros Ventres of Montana: Part II, Religion and Ritual, University of American Anthropological Series No.
Knowledge of Gros Ventre and Blackfeet traditional tales and ceremonial patterns may reveal parallels between traditional ceremonies and the progress of the central character, but even then it is apparent that Winter in the Blood frustrates, if it does not entirely subvert, such a reading.
The nontransparency of the experience (of the narrator, whom I will call No-Name, and of the text) provokes interesting critical alternatives: whether to read it, as William Thackeray does, as a compendium of subtle or disguised references to Gros Ventre ceremonial patterns that must be unmasked for the text to be fully understood, or to read it with critics such as Stephen Tatum, disregarding these traditional referents in favor of parallels between the rhetoric of the text and deconstructive, psychoanalytic, and Marxist critical theories.(16) Is a critical archeology most appropriate for a reading of Winter in the Blood or, indeed, for any American Indian novel, and should the critic resort to "ethnographic" detail in order to explain narrative opacity?
My argument is that Winter in the Blood marks precisely this sort of split between a reading that is savvy to Gros Ventre and Blackfeet traditions and one that refuses their relevance.
Equally, and perhaps more important because it is not quite as obvious, Thackeray's attempt to unearth buried references to Gros Ventre ritual and myth in Winter in the Blood seems to elide the importance of their opacity in the text: it is precisely this opacity which renders the true character of the narrator's alienation from Gros Ventre or Blackfeet culture because of his interpellation in the dominant white culture.
A-kas-kin, Red Deer, and Na-too-pe, the leading Gros Ventres peace chiefs, were equally concerned [as Feather and Big Man] about the cessation of trade which further reduced their tribe's power....
In reference to a later time period, Schilz asserts that "Shortly after they destroyed South Branch House, the Gros Ventres massacred a party of Iroquois hunters."(41) Citing M'Gillivray's 1794-95 journals and the Hudson's Bay Company's Fort Edmonton Journals of 1796, Schilz provides a detailed description of this supposed attack.(42) Unfortunately, neither of these journals even imply that such an attack took place.
Schilz, "The Gros Ventres and the Canadian Fur Trade 1754-1831." American Indian Quarterly 12 (1988): 41-56.
Schilz cites Johnson, 75 (Schilz, "The Gros Ventres and the Canadian Fur Trade", 50).
Schilz cites Johnson, 80-81 (Schilz, "The Gros Ventres and the Canadian Fur Trade," 51).
Schilz, "The Gros Ventres in the Canadian Fur Trade, 1754-1831," American Indian Quarterly 12 (1988): 45-46.
Binnema notes that Matthew Cocking met a chief called White Eagle, whom I have identified as a Gros Ventre. Mr.