100 books like Education for Extinction

By David Wallace Adams,

Here are 100 books that Education for Extinction fans have personally recommended if you like Education for Extinction. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Stringing Rosaries: The History, the Unforgivable, and the Healing of Northern Plains American Indian Boarding School Survivors

Farina King Author Of The Earth Memory Compass: Diné Landscapes and Education in the Twentieth Century

From my list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences.

Why am I passionate about this?

My Diné (Navajo) family stories drew me into history including studies of Indigenous experiences in boarding schools. Two of my uncles were Navajo Code Talkers, and I loved asking them about their life stories. My uncle Albert Smith often spoke about his memories of the war. I was struck by the irony that he was sent to a boarding school as a child where the Navajo language was forbidden, and then he later relied on the language to protect his homelands. I then became interested in all my relatives' boarding school stories, including those of my father, which led me to write my first book The Earth Memory Compass about Diné school experiences. 

Farina's book list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences

Farina King Why did Farina love this book?

For this book, Lajimodiere dedicated much time and effort over years to listen and record boarding school experiences of Native Americans, especially in the northern Plains, acknowledging different forms of schools that threatened Native American lives, families, and peoplehood. Her book encapsulates the voices of the survivors who testify of their struggles and those who did not survive the boarding school colonizing machine that sought to control Indigenous youth and their communities.

Lajimodiere epitomizes an activist scholar who has worked to trace as many Indian boarding schools in the United States as possible, and she has been foundational to the development of the National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition that is spearheading efforts for truth and healing from the adverse impacts and legacies of boarding schools.

By Denise Lajimodiere,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Stringing Rosaries as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Denise Lajimodiere's interest in American Indian boarding school survivors stories evolved from recording her father and other family members speaking of their experiences. Her research helped her to gain insight, a deeper understanding of her parents, and how and why she and her siblings were parented in the way they were. That insight led her to an emotional ceremony of forgiveness, described in the last chapter of Stringing Rosaries.

The journey to record survivors stories led her through the Dakotas and Minnesota and into the personal and private space of boarding school survivors. While there, she heard stories that they…


Book cover of They Called It Prairie Light: The Story of Chilocco Indian School

Farina King Author Of The Earth Memory Compass: Diné Landscapes and Education in the Twentieth Century

From my list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences.

Why am I passionate about this?

My Diné (Navajo) family stories drew me into history including studies of Indigenous experiences in boarding schools. Two of my uncles were Navajo Code Talkers, and I loved asking them about their life stories. My uncle Albert Smith often spoke about his memories of the war. I was struck by the irony that he was sent to a boarding school as a child where the Navajo language was forbidden, and then he later relied on the language to protect his homelands. I then became interested in all my relatives' boarding school stories, including those of my father, which led me to write my first book The Earth Memory Compass about Diné school experiences. 

Farina's book list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences

Farina King Why did Farina love this book?

As soon as I read Lomawaima’s They Called it Prairie Light, I knew that I wanted to work with oral history among my Diné relatives and Native American communities to better understand their voices and perspectives of Indian boarding schools. Lomawaima’s book brought together oral histories and stories that she gathered from her father and relationships that she sustained with former boarding school students of the Chilocco Indian School. She offers a platform for boarding school students to tell their own stories; and, most importantly, she exemplified how to do such significant work.

By K. Tsianina Lomawaima,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked They Called It Prairie Light as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Established in 1884 and operative for nearly a century, the Chilocco Indian School in Oklahoma was one of a series of off-reservation boarding schools intended to assimilate American Indian children into mainstream American life. Critics have characterized the schools as destroyers of Indian communities and cultures, but the reality that K. Tsianina Lomawaima discloses was much more complex.

Lomawaima allows the Chilocco students to speak for themselves. In recollections juxtaposed against the official records of racist ideology and repressive practice, students from the 1920s and 1930s recall their loneliness and demoralization but also remember with pride the love and mutual…


Book cover of Boarding School Seasons: American Indian Families, 1900-1940

Farina King Author Of The Earth Memory Compass: Diné Landscapes and Education in the Twentieth Century

From my list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences.

Why am I passionate about this?

My Diné (Navajo) family stories drew me into history including studies of Indigenous experiences in boarding schools. Two of my uncles were Navajo Code Talkers, and I loved asking them about their life stories. My uncle Albert Smith often spoke about his memories of the war. I was struck by the irony that he was sent to a boarding school as a child where the Navajo language was forbidden, and then he later relied on the language to protect his homelands. I then became interested in all my relatives' boarding school stories, including those of my father, which led me to write my first book The Earth Memory Compass about Diné school experiences. 

Farina's book list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences

Farina King Why did Farina love this book?

Child draws strong connections between boarding schools and Native American communities and families through generations in ways that are accessible and clear-cut for every reader. Her work delves into sources that other scholars overlooked such as letters between boarding school students and families. One of the greatest takeaways from Child’s book and other related studies that I also recommend is how boarding school legacies and impacts continue into the present, affecting not only the boarding school students but also their posterity and American society at large.

By Brenda J. Child,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Boarding School Seasons as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Boarding School Seasons offers a revealing look at the strong emotional history of Indian boarding school experiences in the first half of the twentieth century. At the heart of this book are the hundreds of letters written by parents, children, and school officials at Haskell Institute in Kansas and the Flandreau School in South Dakota. These revealing letters show how profoundly entire families were affected by their experiences.

Children, who often attended schools at great distances from their communities, suffered from homesickness, and their parents from loneliness. Parents worried continually about the emotional and physical health and the academic progress…


Book cover of Education Beyond the Mesas: Hopi Students at Sherman Institute, 1902-1929

Farina King Author Of The Earth Memory Compass: Diné Landscapes and Education in the Twentieth Century

From my list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences.

Why am I passionate about this?

My Diné (Navajo) family stories drew me into history including studies of Indigenous experiences in boarding schools. Two of my uncles were Navajo Code Talkers, and I loved asking them about their life stories. My uncle Albert Smith often spoke about his memories of the war. I was struck by the irony that he was sent to a boarding school as a child where the Navajo language was forbidden, and then he later relied on the language to protect his homelands. I then became interested in all my relatives' boarding school stories, including those of my father, which led me to write my first book The Earth Memory Compass about Diné school experiences. 

Farina's book list on U.S. Indian boarding school experiences

Farina King Why did Farina love this book?

Gilbert worked closely with his Hopi people and nation on this book, and he demonstrates how a book can take different forms such as a documentary film, blog, and other more publicly accessible projects. In his book, Gilbert shows how to apply Indigenous methodologies and intellectual processes to understand Indigenous perspectives of boarding schools. He contextualizes Indian boarding school experiences as part of larger historical dynamics and a sense of being for Hopi who have faced and navigated challenges of colonialism for generations.

By Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Education Beyond the Mesas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Education beyond the Mesas is the fascinating story of how generations of Hopi schoolchildren from northeastern Arizona "turned the power" by using compulsory federal education to affirm their way of life and better their community. Sherman Institute in Riverside, California, one of the largest off-reservation boarding schools in the United States, followed other federally funded boarding schools of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in promoting the assimilation of indigenous people into mainstream America. Many Hopi schoolchildren, deeply conversant in Hopi values and traditional education before being sent to Sherman Institute, resisted this program of acculturation. Immersed in learning…


Book cover of Sally in Three Worlds: An Indian Captive in the House of Brigham Young

Zeese Papanikolas Author Of An American Cakewalk: Ten Syncopators of the Modern World

From my list on about borders you haven’t read.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up in Salt Lake City in the 1950s I was very soon aware that I was living in a world of borders, some permeable and negotiable, and some almost impossible to cross. It was a city of Mormons and a city of those who weren’t; a city of immigrants like my grandparents, and about whom my mother wrote (and wrote well); and a Jim Crow town where Black men and women couldn’t get into the ballroom to hear Duke Ellington play. Finally, it was a city haunted by its Indian past in a state keeping living Indians in its many bleak government reservations. What to make of those borders has been a life-long effort.

Zeese's book list on about borders you haven’t read

Zeese Papanikolas Why did Zeese love this book?

Sally is the moving account of the true story of a captive Indian girl who lived in the house of Brigham Young as a servant and cook, a “wild” woman who had been “tamed” by her civilized captors. When she had almost forgotten her own language Sally was sent off to a Mormon village as the wife of a Pahvant Ute chief in order to “civilize” the local surrounding Indians. Sally’s story asks us what these seemingly simple words “wild” and “tame” really mean, and to think about what they can hide.

By Virginia Kerns,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sally in Three Worlds as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this remarkable and deeply felt book, Virginia Kerns uncovers the singular and forgotten life of a young Indian woman who was captured in 1847 in what was then Mexican territory. Sold to a settler, a son-in-law of Brigham Young, the woman spent the next thirty years as a servant to Young's family. Sally, as they called her, lived in the shadows, largely unseen. She was later remembered as a 'wild' woman made 'tame' who happily shed her past to enter a new and better life in civilization.

Drawing from a broad range of primary sources, Kerns retrieves Sally from…


Book cover of Indians in the Family: Adoption and the Politics of Antebellum Expansion

Mark R. Cheathem Author Of Andrew Jackson, Southerner

From my list on explaining Andrew Jackson.

Why am I passionate about this?

I became interested in Andrew Jackson as an undergraduate student who worked at his Nashville plantation, The Hermitage. Nearly thirty years later, I am still fascinated by Old Hickory. We wouldn’t be friends, and I wouldn’t vote for him, but I consider him essential to understanding the United States’ development between his ascension as a national hero during the War of 1812 and his death in 1845. That we still argue about Jackson’s role as a symbol both of patriotism and of genocide speaks to his enduring significance to the national conversation about what the United States has represented and continues to represent.  

Mark's book list on explaining Andrew Jackson

Mark R. Cheathem Why did Mark love this book?

When I give talks about Jackson, audience members often bring up his “adoption” of Lyncoya, a Creek Indian boy, as an argument against his racist and violent treatment of Native Americans. Peterson delves into that episode, and similar events in the lives of Jackson and men like him, to explain what elite white “adoption” of Native children actually meant and how it reflected larger national themes of acquisition and subjugation. 

By Dawn Peterson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Indians in the Family as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

During his invasion of Creek Indian territory in 1813, future U.S. president Andrew Jackson discovered a Creek infant orphaned by his troops. Moved by an "unusual sympathy," Jackson sent the child to be adopted into his Tennessee plantation household. Through the stories of nearly a dozen white adopters, adopted Indian children, and their Native parents, Dawn Peterson opens a window onto the forgotten history of adoption in early nineteenth-century America. Indians in the Family shows the important role that adoption played in efforts to subdue Native peoples in the name of nation-building.

As the United States aggressively expanded into Indian…


Book cover of This Land Is Our Land: An Immigrant's Manifesto

Glenda R. Carpio Author Of Migrant Aesthetics: Contemporary Fiction, Global Migration, and the Limits of Empathy

From my list on migration, migrant lives, and how they shape our common world.

Why am I passionate about this?

I embody the “American Dream” mythology: I came to the United States as a child who did not speak English and had few means. And now I am the Chair of the English Department at Harvard. But I am the exception, not the rule. So many migrants die on perilous journeys or survive only to live marginal lives under surveillance. Yet we don’t always ask why people risk their lives and those of their children to migrate. And when we do, we don’t often go beyond the first layer of answers. The list of books I recommend allows us to think deeply about the roots of forced migration.

Glenda's book list on migration, migrant lives, and how they shape our common world

Glenda R. Carpio Why did Glenda love this book?

This is a heart-felt but infinitely well-researched book that asks us to go beyond the usual answers one might give to the question of why migrants risk everything and leave their homes (i.e., gang violence, climate change, war, hunger).

Instead, Mehta shows how colonial and neo-colonial forces have and continue to cause migration flows. People migrate, Mehta says, “because the accumulated burdens of history have rendered their homelands less and less habitable.”

As someone who had to leave a country that was thrust into a four-decade-long civil war because of American intervention (the CIA), I appreciate the clear-eye and convincing argument Mehta makes about contemporary migration: it is directly due to American and European political interests (i.e., the Cold War) and their extraction and theft of gold, silver, cash crops, and human beings from the Global South. And it is fueled by black market demands for drugs and arms that…

By Suketu Mehta,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked This Land Is Our Land as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An impassioned defence of global immigration from the acclaimed author of Maximum City.

Drawing on his family's own experience emigrating from India to Britain and America, and years of reporting around the world, Suketu Mehta subjects the worldwide anti-immigrant backlash to withering scrutiny. The West, he argues, is being destroyed not by immigrants but by the fear of immigrants. He juxtaposes the phony narratives of populist ideologues with the ordinary heroism of labourers, nannies and others, from Dubai to New York, and explains why more people are on the move today than ever before. As civil strife and climate change…


Book cover of Making Refuge: Somali Bantu Refugees and Lewiston, Maine

Nell Gabiam Author Of The Politics of Suffering: Syria's Palestinian Refugee Camps

From my list on refugees in or from the Middle East.

Why am I passionate about this?

I developed an interest in the Middle East after taking a class on the Peoples and Cultures of the Middle East and North Africa as an undergraduate student. I later lived and worked in Kuwait for two years and traveled extensively across the Middle East, including to Syria, a country whose hospitality, history, and cultural richness left an indelible impression on me. During subsequent travel to Syria, I became acquainted with the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk, in Damascus. This camp, which physically blended into its surroundings while retaining its Palestinian-ness, ignited my desire to better understand Palestinian refugee identity and the political claims at the heart of this identity. 

Nell's book list on refugees in or from the Middle East

Nell Gabiam Why did Nell love this book?

Making Refuge focuses on Somali Bantu refugees who were resettled in the town of Lewiston, Maine in the early 2000s. These refugees had been the focus of Besteman’s earlier research in Somalia in the 1980s. About a decade after Somalia plunged into civil war, Somali Bantus were being resettled in the United States, enabling Besteman to physically reconnect with them. One of the strengths of this book is that it provides rich historical context, giving the reader an overview of the different stages of the refugee experience: the events leading to war and displacement, life in refugee camps in Kenya, and resettlement in the United States.

Making Refuge is also one of the few books that gives ethnographic insight into the refugee resettlement process in the United States. Through its focus on the challenges faced by resettled Somali Bantus, who are Black and Muslim, it questions the assumptions underlying the…

By Catherine Besteman,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Making Refuge as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

How do people whose entire way of life has been destroyed and who witnessed horrible abuses against loved ones construct a new future? How do people who have survived the ravages of war and displacement rebuild their lives in a new country when their world has totally changed? In Making Refuge Catherine Besteman follows the trajectory of Somali Bantus from their homes in Somalia before the onset in 1991 of Somalia's civil war, to their displacement to Kenyan refugee camps, to their relocation in cities across the United States, to their settlement in the struggling former mill town of Lewiston,…


Book cover of The Price of Whiteness: Jews, Race, and American Identity

Andrew Ridker Author Of Hope

From my list on Jewish life in America.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an American, a Jew, and a novelist—though not necessarily in that order—I’ve always been interested in Jewish-American literature, and the Jewish-American experience in general. What was it like for the first Jews in America? What accounted for their success? What were the costs of assimilation? And where are they—we—headed? These books are a great starting point for anyone looking for answers to these questions. But be warned: in keeping with the Jewish tradition, they often answer those questions with more questions. Not, to quote the Jewish sage Jerry Seinfeld, that there’s anything wrong with that.

Andrew's book list on Jewish life in America

Andrew Ridker Why did Andrew love this book?

In The Price of Whiteness, historian Eric L. Goldstein documents the uneasy shift in Jewish-American identity throughout American history.

Are Jews a religion or a race or something else entirely? How did Ashkenazi Jews come to be seen as white? Goldstein addresses these questions and others in his rigorously researched book, which touches on topics like Black-Jewish relations, and features a surprisingly profound analysis of Adam Sandler’s “The Chanukah Song.”

By Eric L. Goldstein,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Price of Whiteness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What has it meant to be Jewish in a nation preoccupied with the categories of black and white? "The Price of Whiteness" documents the uneasy place Jews have held in America's racial culture since the late nineteenth century. This book traces Jews' often tumultuous encounter with race from the 1870's through World War II, when they became vested as part of America's white mainstream and abandoned the practice of describing themselves in racial terms. American Jewish history is often told as a story of quick and successful adaptation, but Goldstein demonstrates how the process of identifying as white Americans was…


Book cover of Flexible Citizenship: The Cultural Logics of Transnationality

Daromir Rudnyckyj Author Of Beyond Debt: Islamic Experiments in Global Finance

From my list on how anthropology helps us understand the economy.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm an economic anthropologist and teach classes and conduct research in this area. Economic anthropology is different from economics in that it questions many of the things that economics takes for granted. For example, most economists assume that allocating goods through the market by buying and selling is the best way to organize human communities. Economic anthropologists have shown, in contrast, that many societies have been organized according to other exchange principles. In fact, some of the oldest communities in the world, such as Sumer and Babylon, based their economies around elaborate systems of redistribution, in which every citizen was guaranteed food shares.

Daromir's book list on how anthropology helps us understand the economy

Daromir Rudnyckyj Why did Daromir love this book?

We often think of national identity as fixed: one is either Canadian or American, British or Chinese, Australian or Indian. 

The Olympic games come along and people pick up a flag to which they apparently belong. In contrast, Ong shows how economic globalization—the integration of production systems, financial activities, and labour markets across national borders—has created a situation in which national belonging is far from fixed and is instead flexible.

She documents, on the one hand, how individuals strategically obtain citizenship from more than one country and use citizenship for goals both personal and economic. On the other hand, she also documents how nation-states are using flexible definitions of citizenship to foster their own ambitions for economic growth.  

By Aihwa Ong,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Flexible Citizenship as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Few recent phenomena have proved as emblematic of our era, and as little understood, as globalization. Are nation-states being transformed by globalization into a single globalized economy? Do global cultural forces herald a postnational millennium? Tying ethnography to structural analysis, Flexible Citizenship explores such questions with a focus on the links between the cultural logics of human action and on economic and political processes within the Asia-Pacific, including the impact of these forces on women and family life.
Explaining how intensified travel, communications, and mass media have created a transnational Chinese public, Aihwa Ong argues that previous studies have mistakenly…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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