This inspirational and unfailing powerful story reveals the life and visions of the Lakota healer Nicholas Black Elk (1863-1950) and the tragic history of his Sioux people during the epic closing decades of the Old West. In 1930, the aging Black Elk met a kindred spirit, the famed poet, writer and critic John G. Neihardt (1881-1973) on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. The Lakota elder chose Neihardt to share his visions and life with the world. Neihardt understood and today Black Elk is known to all.
Black Elk's remarkable great vision came to him during a time of decimation and loss, when outsiders were stealing the Lakota's land, slaughtering buffalo and threatening their age-old way of life. As Black Elk remembers all too well, the Lakotas, led by such legendary men as Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull, fought unceasingly for their freedom, winning a world-renowned victory at the Little Big Horn and suffering unspeakable losses at Wounded Knee.
The premier edition features: The first-ever annotated edition of Black Elk's story, done by renowned Lakota scholar Raymond J. DeMallie, the original Standing Bear illustrations and new commentary on them, new maps of the world of BLACK ELK SPEAKS and a revised index.