Indians and Whites on the Columbia PlateauBook - 2003
In his provocative ethnohistory, Christopher Miller offers an innovative reinterpretation of relations between Native Americans and Christian settlers on the Columbia Plateau. Miller draws on a wealth of ethnographic resources to show how culturally-derived perceptions and systems of rationality played more of a determining role in the interactions between these two groups than did material forces. Initially, Plateau Indians and the American missionaries who came to convert them perceived each other as crucial to the fulfillment of their own millennial destiny. When these views were contravened, relations quickly and fatally soured. In explaining this devolution, Prophetic Worlds provides a novel and insightful rendering of the cultural understandings that underwrote the mid-nineteenth-century transformation of life on the Plateau.