Ned Blackhawk’s ‘Rediscovery of America’ wins National Book Award

November 17, 2023

Yale historian Ned Blackhawk has won a National Book Award for “The Rediscovery of America: Native Peoples and the Unmaking of U.S. History,” an ambitious and sweeping volume that documents the central role of Native Americans in the political and cultural life of the country.

Blackhawk, the Howard R. Lamar Professor of History and American Studies in Yale’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS), received the award in the nonfiction category at a ceremony Nov. 15 in Manhattan.

The Rediscovery of America,” published by Yale University Press, recontextualizes five centuries of U.S. history by putting Indigenous peoples at its center. Blackhawk “rejects the myth that Native Americans fell quick and easy victims to European invaders,” said a New York Times reviewer, and instead “asserts that they were central to every century of U.S. historical development.”

In accepting the award, Blackhawk, a member of the Te-Moak Tribe of Western Shoshone, said he was “extraordinarily humbled” to be honored for what was a project that was a very long time in the making.