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Seven Journeys in the American West

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1.Road to Pine Ridge
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1840 - 1890

Black Elk, a holy man of the Lakota Sioux, remembers life on the Plains before the coming of the white man. (7.5 mins)

2.Travels with the Oglala
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1. Black Elk, a holy man of the Lakota Sioux, is interviewed in the 1930s about the 'old times'.
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2. Black Elk's story - and the Pine Ridge reservation today.
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3. Black Elk describes his childhood, and how the Wasichu - the 'pale faces' - came to the Plains.
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4. A pow wow in the Pine Ridge reservation - keeping Lakota culture alive in modern day USA.

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The module was shot at the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, where we spent a remarkable week at the invitation of Jonathan Yellow-Bird Steele, the Tribal Chairman, and Mark St Pierre of the Chamber of Commerce. Filming the pow wow was an especial privilege.


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Some of the buildings photographed in the 1890s (Black Elk's 'square boxes') still survive, albeit now standing derelict. Matching the buildings to the photos was a moving experience. Even more moving was a visit to the tribal cemetery for the victims of Wounded Knee, just south of the reservation.

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