American Indian Women Telling Their Lives

SKU: 0803260822

Gretchen M. Bataille, Kathleen Mullen Sands
Grade Levels:
College, University
Multiple Nations
Book Type:
Nebraska Press
Copyright Date:

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American Indian Women: Telling Their Lives examines the unique perspective of Native American women's written autobiographies. Although first released in 1984 the text remains useful for setting the groundwork of this literary perspective. The authors examine the literary tradition of women's narratives in the introductory chapter. The early sources for women's autobiographies include tribal oral traditions, slave narratives, and captivity narratives. The next chapters explore the autobiographies of specific Native American women and their collaborators. In Maria Chona's Papago Woman, edited by Ruth Underhill, the anthropologist acts as the recorder-editor for this strong Papago woman's narrative. The authors conclude that this autobiography demonstrates the power and strength of a traditional Native American woman grounded in her culture and lands. Mountain Wolf Woman's autobiography, edited by anthropologist Nancy Lurie, represents another example of the ethnographic autobiography but with more control given to the Winnebago woman. Anna Shaw's A Pima Past, Helen Sekaquaptewa's Me and Mine: The Life Story of Helen Sekaquaptewa (edited by Louise Udall), and Maria Campbell's Halfbreed, provide further distinction between the anthropologist-driven text and the as-told-to variety of autobiography. The remaining third of the book provides established scholars and general readers with an annotated bibliography of Native women's narratives. This is a valuable resource for anyone interested in Native women and their life stories.

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