Nov 14, 2020 in History

Book Pocahontas

Response Paper

In her book Pocahontas and Powhatan Dilemma, Camilla Townsend pursues an objective of demonstrating people that they should not believe in something simply because many people have stated it. People should also be aware of the myths within their cultures and backgrounds. This book regards Pocahontass life and provides detailed information, which focuses on the cultures practiced at the time. In addition, this book depicts Pocahontas, her father, and her people embracing, resisting, engaging, and manipulating the English in an attempt to protect their way of life. Townsend recounts a tale of Pocahontass people and their struggle for independence. Thus, this book has been written to separate fact from mythology and to demonstrate ones stamina while protecting their people.


In Pocahontas and Powhatan Dilemma, the author states that Pocahontas together with her people had no interest in the English culture. Furthermore, Townsend demonstrates that they were not helpless victims of the English imperialism (Townsend 9). The authors argument appears to be convincing because it would be impractical to believe that Native Americans have only admired the English culture and technology.

The author presents Pocahontas as a brave and intelligent person. Townsend describes her as the one who would sacrifice herself to protect her people. For example, Townsend recounts a story of Pocahontas saving John Smith from execution (Townsend 52). Pocahontas did this because of the love she had for John Smith. The author also depicts the wisdom of Powhatan and other Native American people as well as their methods of opposing the English technological advantage. Townsend illustrates these peoples resistance against the English domination and struggle to maintain their independence. In this book, the only historical record of Pocahontas is what the English have written or seen. Therefore, the author must be correct about Pocahontass motives about protecting her people.

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On the other hand, Pocahontass rescue of John Smith is a major source of debate. Thus, Townsends book Pocahontas and the Powhatan Dilemma appeals to any reader who has interest in colonial America, the indigenous people, and gender history. Therefore, this book is important as it captures the humanity that Pocahontass myth stole from Amonute; the villagers have used her other name, Amonute, in ceremonies (Townsend 13). It is also instrumental in learning not only about Pocahontas but also about the reality behind Americas fabled founding. The author intervenes by depicting the way Pocahontas and her people have managed colonialism in accordance with their own objectives and desires.

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On the whole, Camilla Townsend has effectively argued her point. She has provided all the required evidence to prove that Pocahontas is not a myth. Townsend also illustrates how Pocahontas protected her people. Therefore, there is no contradiction in Camilla Townsends thesis. Moreover, the author states that gender does prevent one from having ambitions and protecting their people and culture. Townsend also examines Pocahontas in various situations, such as kidnapping, imprisonment, marriage, Christianity conversion, and her death. Townsend captures each of them from both the English perspective and that of Pocahontas. In addition, Townsend describes Pocahontass father as the one with stratagem within his chiefdom.

To conclude, Camilla Townsend successfully proves her thesis in Pocahontas and the Powhatan Dilemma by providing plentiful evidence. The author demonstrates that Pocahontas has devoted considerable effort to protect her people and create a bridge between their culture and the English one. Townsend uses the trip to England that Pocahontas has made as a way to illustrate the last attempt of the Native American princess to strengthen the relationship between her people and the English. Thus, Townsend demonstrates that Pocahontas would have acquired knowledge about the English, which she would have brought back to her father upon the return.


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