What is the context, time frame? What was going on at the time? What is the issue that concerns the authors?
Authors and Audience:
Who are the authors? What audience do they address?
Who is involved in this issue or debate? Who is affected by the outcome of the debate and how are their interests related to this issue? How are the authors of the documents affected by the issues represented in the documents?
Examine the positions taken by the authors of the documents and the arguments used to support their position.
To what position does each document adhere? Why do they take this position? What arguments are presented in support of the position and how to they dispel arguments of those with contrary positions?
Summarize the Documents
What do they say? How do they compare with each other?
Why did the textbook author, Foner, choose to put these documents together?
Notion of Freedom:
What version of “freedom” is being depicted by these documents?
How is “freedom” used in the documents? To justify a position? To validate a complaint?
Link to today:
How does this issue reverberate in American history? To what threads of our history and current times does the issue relate?
This week’s VOF Source Analysis documents:
Scarouyady Speech and Pontiac Speeches. You can find this VOF in chapter 4 of the Foner textbook, pg. 176-177.
Primary Source Analysis: Scarouyady and Pontiac’s Speeches
Context, Audience and Authors
The Scarouyady announcement to the Pennsylvania Provincial Council happened during the seven years’ war in 1756. The authors made. the speech due to the incited associations between White settlers in Pennsylvania and the Native Americans (Sturtevant, 2018). The author of the speech is Scarouyady, an Oneida leader who was addressing the colony’s leaders informing them of his approval of war against hostile tribes (Prior, 2020). He also hoped for a fort to be constructed to safeguard Indians and ensure armed whites were disciplined. During this period the debate was between White settlers in Pennsylvania and Native Americans. According to the author, the Native Americans needed a Fort, somewhere they will feel secure for them to be productive in the community (Prior, 2020). For the Native American to achieve, the outcome of the debate was the approval of building a Fort.
The author of the Pontiac Speech is chief Pontiac of the Ottawa tribe. He was talking to a gathering of Ottawa, Huron, and Potawatomie Indians on May 5, 1763. Pontiac was asking his people to exterminate from their lands since they were being treated unfairly (Prior, 2020). For instance, Pontiac grieved that the English were selling goods to the Indians for twice the price yet their goods did not last. During this period the debate was between the English and the Indians. According to the author, the Indians would benefit more by the outcome of the debate if they would be treated equally and goods sold to them at a fair price (Sturtevant, 2018). The author, Pontiac is affected by the issues presented in the debate given that he is an Indian.
Both the authors, Pontiac and Scarouyady are advocating for the same purpose. The authors’ positions are based on protecting and ensuring equality to their communities. For instance, Scarouyady suggested a Fort to be built where Native Americans or Indians will be protected (Sturtevant, 2018). On other hand, Pontiac encourages his community to exterminate from their lands due to discrimination and increased price for products sold to their community. According to the Pontiac speech, the English did not consider them as equals.
Summary of Documents
Pontiac’s speech reminds the Indians how essential it is for them, that they exterminate their lands in the nation which seeks to destroy their community. According to the author, the Indians had reached a point they could not supply their needs, as they had done from the French (Sturtevant, 2018). Pontiac indicates that the English hiked their product’s cost, which they did not last compared to the French. The author encourages the Indians to fight back to ensure equality.
On the other hand, Scarouyady’s speech to the Pennsylvania Provisional Council is designed to encourage the council to fight against hostile tribes. Furthermore, the speech encourages the council to consider building a Fort to enhance the security of the Indians and Native Americans (Prior, 2020). Scarouyady also encourages his people and the Pennsylvania Provisional Council to fight back, and start by building the Fort.
Notion of Freedom
The versions of freedom presented in the speeches are based on equality and right for protection. For instance, in Pontiac’s speech, the idea of freedom is founded on equality. According to the speech, Indians were not receiving equal treatment, which was displayed by the product’s price. On the other hand, in Scarouyady’s speech the idea of freedom is based on the right to be protected by building a Fort (Sturtevant, 2018). The issue of equality and protection has been a major setback in the American history which resulted in the death of millions and many becoming homeless.
Link to Today
Even in these modern days, equality is yet to be achieved given that there are still issues relating to race (Prior, 2020). Racism is currently the major issue that can relate to incidents represented by authors.
Prior, C. (2020). Settlers in Indian Country: Sovereignty and Indigenous Power in Early America. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108883979
Sturtevant, A. (2018). Indigenous Politics in Pontiac’s War. In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History. https://oxfordre.com/americanhistory/view/10.1093/acrefore/9780199329175.001.0001/acrefore-9780199329175-e-502