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How to Be an Indian in the 21st Century (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

This collection of poetry, prose and narrative is reminiscent The Education of Little Tree, but it is a mature recollection from a man who has navigated two cultures (Iroquois and Polish), many ironies and many indignities throughout his life. Yet the verse is warm, engaging, and sometime laugh-out-loud funny. But there are also dark images from a Catholic education and schoolyard/workplace bullying, I cringed at certain passages, ashamed for the ignorance and racial biases he experienced along the way… All told, I highly recommend this little big book, especially as current politics assemble and vibrate in the Dakotas.

— From Sara's Picks


In deceptively simple prose and verse, Louis V. "Two Shoes" Clark III shares his life story, from childhood on the Rez, through school and into the working world, and ultimately as an elder, grandfather, and published poet. How to Be an Indian in the 21st Century explores Clark’s deeply personal and profound take on a wide range of subjects, from schoolyard bullying to workplace racism to falling in love. Warm, plainspoken, and wryly funny, Clark’s is a unique voice talking frankly about a culture’s struggle to maintain its heritage. His poetic storytelling style matches the rhythm of the life he recounts, what he calls "the heartbeat of my nation."

About the Author

Born and raised on the Oneida Reservation in northeastern Wisconsin, Louis V. Clark III turned to poetry to continue the oral tradition of his people, the People of the Standing Stone. A member of the Iroquois Confederacy, his family is of the Bear clan. His first chapbook, titled Two Shoes, was published in the spring of 2011 by the Sequoyah National Research Center at the University of Arkansas. He received a Fellowship Award for his work from the Oneida Nation Arts Program and the Wisconsin Arts Board. He and his wife live in Omro, where their home is filled with love from six children and the anticipation of a ninth grandchild.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780870208157
ISBN-10: 0870208152
Publisher: Wisconsin Historical Society Press
Publication Date: February 1st, 2017
Pages: 120
Language: English