Unnamed Yoknapatawpha Indians

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Unnamed Yoknapatawpha Indians
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Unnamed Yoknapatawpha Indians
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The tribe of Indians in "Red Leaves" is not given a name. In his later fictions Faulkner identifies the Indians who live in Yoknapatawpha first as "Choctaw," then as "Chickasaw." Historically, they were part of the Chickasaw nation, but Faulkner's Indians are not particularly historical. For example, in this story they are associated several times with cannibalism (314, 319). Their customs include burying a chief's dog, horse and personal slave along with the chief, though the story also several times references the time before they owned any slaves, and they blame the newly arrived white settlers for introducing slavery to them. By the time "Red Leaves" takes place, they have had many interactions with the white world. Their regular outfits include European accessories like the "enameled snuffbox" that Three Basket wears as an earring (313), and they attend the chief's funeral in "their stiff European finery" (331). And this tribe some years earlier decided to "do as the white men do" - to raise and "feed" Negroes as slaves "and sell them to the white men for money" (319).

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