Discussion Questions: The Unredeemed Captive
1. The official seal of the Massachusetts Bay Company is emblematic of its proprietors’ vision as being the rescuers of the Native Americans after encroaching onto their land.
2. The colonists inarguably have their gripes and misgivings about the land onto which they encroached, seeing that its people shared a completely different set of values and beliefs.
3. The Williams occupy a central role in Deerfield society, essentially being among the revered people of the Puritan faith that most of the colonists espoused.
4. The Indians’ attack on Deerfield was a cleverly executed military maneuver by the French to facilitate the rescue of a French Privateer who had been captured by the English.
5. Some of the captives were unable to cope with the conditions of the march; some did not even respond to available help and were therefore put to death.
6. Eunice was captured at the tender age of seven.
7. For seven-year-old Eunice, the march was utterly dreadfully. It was also, in a way, an indictment of her father’s character and personality, who she saw as having failed his family.
8. John Williams clearly observed that most of the English people who had been captured by the Native Americans had essentially become naturalized into the Indian culture.
9. The group started their journey through the Greenfield meadows, before later on proceeding to the route at the Connecticut River near Brattleboro.
10. Williams heard that his daughter, Eunice, had been integrated into the Indian society, which would later become a core part of her identity.
11. As a member of the society at Kanhawake, Eunice was given the following different names: Marguerite, A'ongote, and Gannenstenhawi.
12. Foremost, Eunice forgot her English identity and thus lost all sense of entitlement to it. She then took a liking to the wonderful Native American culture.
13. First, the English culture did not allow women to become integral members of society equal to men; women were expected to fully submit to their men. In the Native American culture, however, women were recognized as important parts of society.
14. Eunice willingly took up a domestic life with her Indian family. She was a loving wife and mother, having married her husband out of love and choosing to have children with him.
Throughout the book:
15. Redemption means rescuing someone from a situation in which he or she involuntarily and unwillingly finds himself or herself. This is applied in the story to mean that the English captives needed to be saved from their Native American captors as a form of redemption from the latter’s faith and savage culture.
16. John and Stephen Williams essentially despised Catholicism and found it to be inappropriate.
17. The Williams and all their concerned friends seem to believe that Eunice had been forcibly indoctrinated into the Indian culture and Catholic faith, having been taken in by her Indian captors at the tender age of seven when she was still quite young and impressionable.
18. When Eunice visited her New England home, a lot of things had changed. She started feeling a bit connected to her real family more than before. She eventually chose to have her children stay there for a considerably longer time than ever before.
19. Eunice chooses to stay in Kanhawake even after the death of her husband since she feels that that is where her home is; that is her whole life.
20. Stephen never acknowledges that Eunice wants to stay with her Indian family as he is left trying to convince her to return.