Black Elk Speaks

  • by John G. Neihardt
  • Narrated by Robin Neihardt
  • 6 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The famous life story of the Lakota healer and visionary, Nicholas Black Elk.
Widely hailed as a spiritual classic, this inspirational and unfailingly 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 Lakotas’ 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 Bighorn and suffering unspeakable losses at Wounded Knee.
Black Elk Speaks however is more than the epic history of a valiant Native nation. It is beloved as a spiritual classic because of John Neihardt’s sensitivity to Black Elk’s resounding vision of the wholeness of earth, her creatures, and all of humanity. Black Elk Speaks is a once-in-a-lifetime read: the moving story of a young Lakota boy before the reservation years, the unforgettable history of an American Indian nation, and an enduring spiritual message for us all.
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.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Tale of tears

The greatest and saddest story I've listen to, well captured by Flaming Rainbow. How badly The People were treated, and the constant soup of lies they were forced to eat. Do not listen if you are not ready to hear America's dark history. What strikes me is how surprised people are to hear about the freedoms lost to our Govt today. Read and listen to the history of your Grandfathers folks; don't think that what was done to The People before wont be done to you tomorrow.
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- William Sanders

A book that will change your life...

Would you listen to Black Elk Speaks again? Why?

This is a book that I will be relistening to and rereading over and over again the rest of my life. It is so full of fascinating detail about another culture, spiritual insight and wisdom that I will get more out of it every time I listen to it.


What did you like best about this story?

The spirituality of the hoop of the world. The ending when Neihardt takes Black Elk up Harney Peak one last night.


Which character – as performed by Robin Neihardt – was your favorite?

Black Elk


Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes. It is easy to listen to RobinNeihardt's voice so the fascinating book comes through well.


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- Robert

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-31-2014
  • Publisher: Skyyrim Studios