The new Terence Malik film “The New World” has recently opened. In it, Pocahontas, the Powhatan princess who befriended English captain John Smith and the colonists of the Jamestown, Virginia settlement in the early 1600s, is a lover of Smith. In reality, Pocahontas was more of a savvy political strategist, according to historian Camilla Townsend. Townsend believes that Pocahontas’ actions throughout her life reveal a woman with a full grasp of the plight facing her people, and desire to save them from what eventually befell all Native Americans in the years to come.

Certain events in Pocahontas’ life are undisputed, such as the fact that she was kidnapped and held for ransom by Jamestown settlers in 1613, baptized in 1614, and married Englishman John Rolfe that same year.

“Pocahontas’ wedding was definitely a well-thought political move on her part, something she did for peace, because in the Indian world, high-born women married the enemy to prevent further conflict,” says Townsend. However, there is evidence that Rolfe loved Pocahontas (who took the name Rebecca Rolfe after her nuptials) and that she may have had real feelings for him in return.

“To suggest, however, that Pocahontas abandoned her people or loved John Smith, as The New World movie does, is ridiculous,” says Townsend. “She didn’t love the English. She used them. She was not the hapless Monica Lewinsky of her time. She was a James Carville.”

Art credit:

Start your year off right with a beautiful 2006 crop circle calendar. But hurry: we’re almost sold out! If your New Year’s resolution is to go on a diet, one of the best diets (and funniest diet books can be read FREE, right on this website! And don’t forget to subscribe today to make sure we’ll still be here for you in 2006.

NOTE: This news story, previously published on our old site, will have any links removed.

Dreamland Video podcast
To watch the FREE video version on YouTube, click here.

Subscribers, to watch the subscriber version of the video, first log in then click on Dreamland Subscriber-Only Video Podcast link.