[lit-ideas] Savage

  • From: "" <dmarc-noreply@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> (Redacted sender "Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx" for DMARC)
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 3 Sep 2015 19:40:16 -0400

In a message dated 9/3/2015 4:05:36 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
profdritchie@xxxxxxxxx writes:
But I agree that, "un pays de sauvages" is unlikely to have meant, "a
country full of people who are as interesting, valuable and attractive as

And it is also the title of a book, by N. Hazlewood:


"A tale of tragedy, catastrophe, and the triumph of the human spirit."

The author has a degree in history and left his job with the trade union
UNISON to travel throughout South America. He lived in Madrid (not in South

""Savage" narrates how in 1830 a Yamana Indian boy, Orundellico, was bought
from his uncle in Tierra del Fuego for the price of a mother-of-pearl

"He was therefore renamed "Jemmy Button", and removed from his primitive
nomadic existence, where life revolved around the hunt for food and the need
for shelter, and taken halfway round the world to England, then at the
height of the Industrial Revolution" -- "the satanic mills" that Milton was
singing about.

Orundelico learned English and Christianity, met King William IV and Queen
Adelaide, and made a strong impression on many of the major figures in
Britain, eventually becoming a celebrity.

Charles Darwin (whom Popper quotes quite a bit) himself befriended
Orundelico (whom Popper does not quote quite a bit) and later wrote about
time together on The Beagle, voyaging back to the southern tip of South

"Their friendship influenced one of the most important and controversial
works of the century, On the Origin of the Species."

"Upon his return to Tierra del Fuego, Orundelico found that life could
never be the same for him there."

"The Beagle's captain deposited the young man on a lonely, wind-swept shore
and charged him with the tasks of "civilizing" his people and bringing God
to his homeland."

"At first ostracised and attacked by other Fuegians, Orundelico later
became the target of zealous and ambitious missionaries."

"Thirty years after his return, a missionary schooner in Tierra del Fuego
was attacked, with nearly everyone on board killed, and Orundelico himself
was accused of leading the massacre."

"Orundelico's life story illustrates how the lofty ideals of Imperialism
often resulted in appalling consequences."

"Thoroughly researched and remarkably well written, this fascinating and
poignant story is ultimately about survival, revenge, murder, and the
destruction of a whole race of people, blurring the boundaries of civilization
and savagery."


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