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16 marzo 2012 5 16 /03 /marzo /2012 16:46

Where the Tall Grass Grows: Becoming Indigenous and the Mythological Legacy of the American West


En este libro  provocador y entretenido, el historiador y músico Bobby Bridger explora el impacto de la cultura nativa americana en la psique norteamericana. “Donde crece la hierba alta” (“Where the Tall Grass Grows”), examina el impacto de la mitología de los indios de Norte América en la identidad contemporánea y el desarrollo de entretenimiento popular moderno, particularmente la industria cinematográfica de Hollywood. Los vaticinios del vidente Alce Negro, hombre santo entre los Lakota, tejen una crónica de los indios norteamericanos en la psique cultural de Estados Unidos de la época de Buffalo Bill, Toro Sentado, y el Salvaje Oeste a través de la creación de las películas de vaqueros (westerns), John Wayne, Bailando con Lobos, Avatar, y los modernos creadores de mitos. De este modo, Bobby Bridger ofrece una mirada muy original a la historia y la cultura estadounidense desde mediados del siglo XIX hasta la actualidad.

In this entertaining and thought-provoking book, noted historian and musician Bobby Bridger explores the impact of Native American culture on the American psyche. “Where the Tall Grass Grows” examines the impact of indigenous American mythology on contemporary identity and the development of modern popular entertainment, particularly the Hollywood film industry. The prophecies of the Lakota holy man Black Elk are woven into a chronicle of American Indians in the American cultural psyche from the era of Buffalo Bill, Sitting Bull, and the Wild West through the creation of the Western, John Wayne, Dances with Wolves, Avatar, and modern mythmaking. In so doing, Bridger provides a highly original look at American history and culture from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day.





Books by Black Elk
Books about Black Elk



The Rag Blog


RAG RADIO / Thorne Dreyer : Bobby Bridger on the Lasting Impact of Native American Cultureby Thorne Dreyer / The Rag Blog. The multi-talented Bobby Bridger — singer/songwriter,  playwright and actor, sculptor and art educator, author and historian — was our guest on Rag Radio. We discussed Bridger’s latest book – Where the Tall Grass Grows: Becoming Indigenous and the Mythological Legacy of the American West – and specifically the lasting impact of Native American culture on American society. The post includes an embedded player for listening to the podcast.


Among the most interesting figures I’ve written about is Bobby Bridger, a singer, songwriter, actor, author, and historian. His career arc has taken him from the heart of the NashvilleandLos Angelesmusic scenes to a singular path as an epic balladeer of the American West. He’s perhaps best known today for his incisive writing about aspects of the American West that he’s become expert in.  His books include A Ballad of the WestBuffalo Bill and Sitting Bull: Inventing the Wild West, Bridger, and his latest, Where the Tall Grass Grows, Becoming Indigenous and theMythological Legacy of the American West.

You’ll find other, more extensive stories I’ve written about Bobby and his fascinating life and career journey on this blog.


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VERSE / Mariann G. Wizard : Hiatus by Mariann G. Wizard / The Rag Blog.“The plazas are empty, swept clean of debris, / smug analyses already written… / But out of the glare of the media stare, / the knowledge unerringly spreads… / As spring comes around, let us welcome the sound / of our children all rising as one!” The Wiz puts it all together, as she so often does.


David Bacon : How U.S. Policies Fueled the Great Mexican Migration by David Bacon / The Rag Blog.In a remarkable feature article originally written in partnership with The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute and the Puffin Foundation, Bacon — who is Thorne Dreyer’s guest on Rag Radio Friday, March 15 – does what he does best: bring into focus larger political and societal issues by showing us how they affect individual lives. Bacon reports on the “close connection between U.S. investment and trade deals in Mexico and the displacement and migration of its people.”
BOOKS / Ron Jacobs : Sparks and Wildfires by Ron Jacobs / The Rag Blog.Jacobs reviews two recent books, which he calls “worthwhile and provocative reads” – Mari Jo Buhle and Paul Buhle’s It Started in Wisconsinand Paul Mason’s Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere. These two books “present the primary actors in the global uprising — students, workers, and the marginalized — and describe their passion, joy, and fears.” And they also begin an analysis of the growing ”global movement against neoliberalism.”


Robert Jensen : Holding Onto the Joy in Teaching by Robert Jensen / The Rag Blog. Jensen is a “tenured professor in a relatively stable university,” which, he tells us, “is quite possibly the best job in the world.” Though critical of the “increasingly corporate nature” of the university, he points out that he is “paid well to read, think, talk and write…” His philosophy of teaching? “Pay attention, be astonished, tell about it.”
Rag Blog : ‘Feed Your Head’ on April Fool’s Day! “Old Skool” will be in session on April Fool’s Day in Austin. A Rag Blog/Rag Radio “Feed Your Head” benefit bash at Jovita’s on April 1 will showcase a unique slice of Austin music history with 60s psychedelic rockers Shiva’s Headband, “progressive country” pioneers, Greezy Wheels, and Jesse Sublett, who founded the alt-punk legends, The Skunks.
Bob Feldman : Texas Oil Industry Emerges; O. Henry Publishes, 1890-1920 by Bob Feldman / The Rag Blog. In the latest installment of his “hidden history of Texas” series, Bob looks at the emergence of the oil industry, with production at Spindletop starting up in 1909 and creating “the state’s first great oil boom.” Also, in the 1890s, an Austin writer named William Sydney Porter — who later gained fame as “O. Henry” — started an Austin newspaper called The Rolling Stone (more than 70 years before Jann Wenner started his publication of the same name).
Brendan Smith and Jeremy Brecher : Labor’s Keystone Dilemma by Brendan Smith and Jeremy Brecher / Portside. These are tough times for construction workers in America – the unemployment rate in the industry is up to 17 percent. And the “titanic struggle over the Keystone XL pipeline” is being waged against that backdrop, with the pressure it has placed on unions to take sides. But, in the larger picture, unions and environmentalists have sought solidarity and agree on most issues — “ranging from living wages and health care to corporate greed and green job creation.”
Lamar W. Hankins : Religion and Secularism in the Public Square by Lamar W. Hankins /The Rag Blog. Lamar discusses Rick Santorum’s false reading of John F. Kennedy with his claim that Kennedy didn’t believe that people of faith “have a role in the public square.” Kennedy said no such thing. Lamar points out that “opposing the promotion of religion and religious practices by government is not the same as opposing religious expression.”

The Rag Blog is a non-profit internet newsmagazine produced by activist journalists committed to progressive social change. The Rag Blog is published by the New Journalism Project, inc., a Texas non-profit corporation that has been granted tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. This status is retroactive to Oct. 9, 2008.


The Rag Blog


BOOKS / Mariann G. Wizard : Jonah Raskin’s ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Women by Mariann G. Wizard /The Rag Blog. Mariann reviews Jonah’s new poetry chapbook, Rock ‘n’ Roll Women: Portraits of a Generation, in which he “celebrates both rock and women equally and with great good will.” Raskin profiles “24 rock ‘n’ roll women,” with short poems that were written to be performed, accompanied by music. The Wizard points out that ”Every woman who came of age when Beethoven was rolled over has her own internal rock soundtrack.”

Every Friday, 2-3 p.m. (CST) on KOOP 91.7-FM in Austin.
To stream online, go here.
Rag Radio features hour-long in-depth interviews and discussion about issues of progressive politics, culture, and history. Our guests include newsmakers, artists, leading thinkers, and public figures.
  • THIS FRIDAY, March 16, 2012: Journalist and Labor Activist David Baconon how U.S. policies fueled the great Mexican migration.
  • Listen to Thorne Dreyer’s March 9, 2012, Rag Radio interview with Singer/Songwriter and Author Bobby Bridger on the lasting social impact of Native American culture .
Rag Radio is rebroadcast every Sunday at 10 a.m. (Eastern) on
WFTE, 90.3-FM in Mt. Cobb, PA and 105.7-FM in Scranton, PA.

April Fool’s Day : ‘Old Skool’ is in session.


The New Journalism Project, inc.
P.O. Box 16442
Austin, TX 78761-6442 

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