Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Trim: 7 x 10
978-1-4422-4001-8 • Hardback • October 2015 • $135.00 • (£104.00)
978-1-4422-4002-5 • eBook • October 2015 • $121.50 • (£94.00)
Michael Hilger is professor of English and Film at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He has produced video documentaries on the oral history and folk stories of the Lac Court Oreilles Chippewa Band in Wisconsin. He is the author of From Savage to Nobleman: Images of Native Americans in Film (Scarecrow Press, 1995).
The literature on Native Americans in film is dominated by accounts that demonstrate extensive racism, misrepresentation, and stereotyping together with descriptions of some more-authentic and positive depictions occurring in the recent past. The work by Hilger is no exception to this approach. A revision and update of his 1995 From Savage to Nobleman: Images of Native Americans in Film—a book based, in turn, on his 1986 filmography, The American Indian in Film—the volume has the advantage of extensive revision, with more than 160 additional pages compared to its 1995 predecessor. Other virtues of this newest contribution to the field include the author's provision of film credits, information on critical reception for many of the films (an especially rare feature of such an encyclopedic work), contextualizing essays on traditional and contemporary filmic treatments of Native Americans, and an in-depth discussion of representative films from the silent film era into the 2000s. Also useful are appendixes of films by nation (i.e., tribe or ethnic group), theme, and time period and lists of works cited and consulted. Impressive, well organized, and up-to-date, the information in this critical volume is suitable for all academic and public library reference collections.
Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readership levels.
— Choice Reviews
[A] very enlightening and useful study…. Michael Hilger’s Native Americans in the Movies: Portrayals from Silent Films to Present broadens the scope, analysis, and cataloging of cinematic portrayals of Native Americans. Hilger expands his treatment to cover films and television portrayals of not only American Indians but also Canadian First Nations peoples. He captures the breadth of these portrayals, making sure to bring them up to the present to include not only recently produced films and TV shows about Native North American peoples, but also portrayals directed by Native Americans and starring Native Americans depicted in contemporary settings, facing contemporary societal and cultural issues. In all this he has done an excellent job.
— Journal of American Culture