Clements Center Lecture Series

The Rising of God's Red Son: The Making of an American Religion and the Road to Wounded Knee

Thursday, April 23, 2015
6 pm reception followed by 6:30 lecture and book-signing
Dallas Hall, McCord Auditorium 

Although this event is free and open to the public, seating is limited. 
Click here to register online or call 214-768-3684.


Ghost Dance at Pine RidgeProfessor Warren's lecture will be drawn from his forthcoming book, "A Hole in the Dream: The Ghost Dance and the Making of Modern America," (Basic Books, 2015). For Warren, the Ghost Dance movement of the late nineteenth century was neither a futile expression of autonomy by the Plains Indians nor a symbolic moment in the closing of the frontier.  Rather, Warren argues that the tenets of the Ghost Dance expressed changing attitudes about the relationship between people and the natural world.  Scholars have focused almost exclusively on the religious and spiritual dimensions of the ceremony, while overlooking the Ghost Dancers' critique of free-market capitalism.  Warren's exploration of the environmental and economic crises underlying the spiritual revival and the subsequent massacre of a band of Minneconjou Sioux at Wounded Knee, South Dakota in December 1890 challenge the traditional narratives about the relationship between religion and environmental decline in the American West and places the Ghost Dance at the origins of modern America.  His talk will be of interest to Dedman College scholars in history, religious studies, and anthropology, among other disciplines.


Louis Warren is W. Turrentine Professor of History at the University of California-Davis, and a leading scholar on the American West.  He is the author of two previous books: The Hunter's Game: Poachers and Conservationists in Twentieth-Century America (Yale, 1997), and Buffalo Bill's America: William Cody and the Wild West Show (Knopf, 2005), both of which won major professional awards.  He received a Guggenheim Fellowship to support  his work on "A Hole in the Dream."

This lecture is sponsored in part with SMU's Dedman College Interdisciplinary Institute's Scott-Hawkins Lecture Series.