Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee


Dee Brown

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Son of William Bent and brother of George Bent. Charlie, along with his brother, is notable for being one of the only half-white, half-Native American characters in the book. It’s telling, then, that they chose to reject all white civilization following the Sand Creek massacre, during which American soldiers murdered dozens of Native American women and children. Charlie’s choice reflected the escalating violence and cruelty of white society in the late 19th century: he believed that the Native American half of his heritage was morally superior to the white half.

Charlie Bent Quotes in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

The Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee quotes below are all either spoken by Charlie Bent or refer to Charlie Bent. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Genocide Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Picador edition of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee published in 2007.
Chapter 4 Quotes

As soon as his wound healed, George made his way back to his father's ranch. There from his brother Charlie he heard more details of the soldiers' atrocities at sand creek—the horrible scalpings and mutilations, the butchery of children and infants. After a few days the brothers agreed that as half-breeds they wanted no part of the white man's civilization.

Related Characters: George Bent, Charlie Bent
Page Number: 92
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation long mobile
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Charlie Bent Character Timeline in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

The timeline below shows where the character Charlie Bent appears in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 4: War Comes to the Cheyennes
Genocide Theme Icon
Resistance and Violence Theme Icon
...Bent, the half Cheyenne, half white son of William Bent. George reunited with his brother Charlie Bent on William Bent’s ranch. The brothers agreed to reject white civilization, and abandoned the ranch... (full context)
Chapter 5: Powder River Invasion
Genocide Theme Icon
Law and Property Theme Icon
Resistance and Violence Theme Icon
...flag. The two sides arranged a meeting. Among the Cheyenne representatives were George Bent and Charlie Bent , the sons of William Bent. (full context)
Law and Property Theme Icon
Resistance and Violence Theme Icon
...the meeting, the U.S. soldiers asked the Cheyenne chiefs why they’d attacked peaceful white men. Charlie Bent shot back that he and the Cheyenne would continue attacking white men until the U.S.... (full context)
Chapter 7: “The Only Good Indian Is a Dead Indian”
Resistance and Violence Theme Icon
In the autumn of 1866, Roman Nose led a group of soldiers, including Charlie Bent , to Fort Wallace, while another chief, Black Kettle, led a second group of soldiers,... (full context)