THE RAIN DANCE PEOPLE : The Pueblo Indians, Their Past and Present, Richard Erdoes. New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 1976. (Grades 6+)
This book is an excellent example of detailed research of both documented print sources and personal interviews, photographs and sketches. Erdoes traces the history of the Pueblo Indians from prehistoric times to the mid-1970's and provides information about their unique lifestyle and how they have struggled to maintain it. His straightforward retelling of how the west was "won" serves to dispell the myth of the winning of the wild west as a glamorous event. Careful and detailed coverage is given to the invasion of missionaries who traveled to Pueblo land to stamp out the ancient native religion. Readers are informed of the boarding schools that young Pueblo children were required to attend where they were forbidden to speak "Indian". The strengths of the Pueblo communal and governmental structures are examined in great detail. Throughout the book Erdoes weaves an explanation of the the significance of art in Pueblo culture. An extraordinary work. Highly recommended. Reviewed by Lisa Mitten and Naomi Caldwell-Wood
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Native American BOOKS, text and graphics copyright Paula Giese, 1996
Last Updated: Monday, March 11, 1996 - 11:37:17 AM