These discussion questions challenge students to talk aloud with other members of the class to broaden their ideas, challenge arguments, formulate positions on issues, hypothesize the influence of the past on current issues, and differentiate between fact and interpretation.

  1. What do you think might have happened if the British army had backed Tecumseh and his followers adequately?
  2. Even though General Harrison lost three times as many men as Tecumseh, what was the U.S. Army's symbolic victory at the Battle of Tippecanoe? How did General Harrison use this battle to further his political career in 1840?
  3. In the film, what does historian R. David Edmunds mean when he says tribal people of Tecumseh's time would say, "Tecumseh is a man of very, very strong medicine"? Can you think of any 21st-century figures that you could describe as being a person of “strong medicine"?
  4. What conditions inspired religious visionaries like Tenskwatawa, the Prophet, to preach a return to traditional ways? What did he forbid Native people to do? How did his message revitalize Indian culture? What are some other examples of Native American religious leaders attempting to revitalize tribal people at other times in American history?
  5. What options did Tenskwatawa have when General Harrison marched on Prophetstown? Should he have fought? Would he have abandoned the village, with all its stored corn, ammunition, etc.?
  6. What are some of the ways Indian culture is being revitalized today?
Exclusive Corporate
Funding Provided by:
Liberty Mutual Insurance
Major Funding by:
Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
Additional Funding
Provided by:
American Experience