Standing Rock

Greed, Oil and the Lakota's Struggle for Justice

Bikem Ekberzade


A centuries-spanning story of dispossession and resistance culminating in the events of Standing Rock.

In 2016, the world looked on as thousands set up camp within Standing Rock Sioux Reservation to protest the re-routing of the Dakota Access oil pipeline close to the Reservation's northern border. People from many Native American tribes were joined by non-tribal environmentalists, including US army veterans, all of them standing in solidarity with the Lakota. Then, in early 2017, the protest was disbanded using brutal force. And that is when the real struggle began.

From the decline of the East coast tribes to the dispossession of the native people along the Missouri basin, from the Battle of Little Bighorn to Wounded Knee, America’s indigenous peoples have been subject to horrendous persecution, land grabs and the steady erosion of their way of life. Frontline journalist Ekberzade Bikem recounts the epic story of this centuries’ old struggle as told to her by the guardians of the oral history of the Great Plains, the grandson of chief Sitting Bull's nephew and many of the other activists pledged to continue the fight in the aftermath of Standing Rock.

Author Bio

Bikem Ekberzade is primarily a photojournalist and documentary photographer, who specialises in forced migration in conflict and post-conflict zones. She has photographed and written two books on refugees, Illegal (2006) and West-end of the Border (2010), which were part of her documentary photography project The Refugee Project. She has written or contributed to several books and articles, and her photographs have been published by several international newspapers and magazines. Ekberzade is from and is currently based in Turkey.

Table of Contents

  • Prologue
  • Before we Begin…
  • 1. The Resistance
  • 2. Seventh Generation
  • 3. The Black Snake
  • 4. Showdown at Standing Rock
  • Epilogue
  • Author's Note


'Brings memories of freedom, and offers a humane view of the past in Indian Country.'
Leonard Peltier, political prisoner, activist and member of American Indian Movement

‘Lest we forget the heart-wrenching resistance of the Sioux and their allies at Standing Rock, Bikem Ekberzade meticulously sets their story in its historic context. This is important, valuable work at a time when Indigenous people all over the world are at the forefront of the struggle for ecological justice.’
Üstün Bilgen-Reinart, author of Night Spirits: The Story of the Relocation of the Sayisi Dene

‘Shows how the confrontation at Standing Rock fits a centuries-long pattern of oppression, yet also marks the emergence of a growing and increasingly effective Native American resistance to corporate greed and environmental injustice.’
Michael Brune, Executive Director, Sierra Club

‘Weaves a much needed and moving story. The book comes alive through the eloquent voices of its Native American organizers, and Ekberzade creates an intimate window into the lives of her subjects. Standing Rock may have its roots in hundreds of years of history but more than ever, this book matters now.’
Donatella Lorch, former foreign correspondent for The New York Times

‘The story of Standing Rock embodies a long, sad history of violence and broken promises by the US government. Ekberzade's carefully documents this history and illuminates it with the words of living Native Americans. An important contribution to our understanding of the US's shameful and often appalling abuse of America's original peoples.’
Nick B. Mills, journalist and author of Karzai


Publication Date: 15 September 2018
232 pages

Product ISBNs: Paperback: 9781786992826
Hardback: 9781786992833
eBook ePub: 9781786992857
eBook PDF: 9781786992840
eBook Kindle: 9781786992864

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