Is it a myth that white folks preferred Native American societies ?

By | October 25, 2016

I was reading somewhere, I don’t remember where, and it talked about how Native American societies were by nature egalitarian. European societies in America were heavily stratified and because of this, whites that were captured and enslaved by Native American societies did not want to return home.

The implication was that Native American societies, while ultimately succumbing to European societies, were, in fact, structurally superior due to this. Now I wanted to know whether or not this was actually true or if this was a myth.

I initially asked this question on /r/askHistorians. No one responded. I was going to repost but someone already beat me to to it.

I won’t copy and paste the answer because it’s a bit long, and, ultimately, they don’t really answer the question. What they did was give a very interesting historical context of Native American-European relations and how that relates to slavery both from a Native American and European perspective.

Given the scope of the question, both time-wise and population-wise, it becomes difficult to really answer the crux of the question. Clearly, it wasn’t a myth. There are incidents of whites preferring to remain captive rather than return to their society of origin.

But did Native Americans prefer captivity over their society of origin? The problem is that European society in America was not inclusive. People of African, Asian and indigenous descent were not considered legitimate parts of that society, so it’s going to be extremely unlikely that those people will have fond feelings towards their adopted society.

Or maybe that’s just a liberal myth. I tried asking in /r/askhistorians but received no answer.

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