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February 11 , 2009

The Columbia Guide to American Indians of the Southwest


A major work on the history and culture of Southwest Indians, The Columbia Guide to American Indians of the Southwest tells a remarkable story of cultural continuity in the face of migration, displacement, violence, and loss. The Native peoples of the American Southwest are a unique group, for while the arrival of Europeans forced many Native Americans to leave their land behind, those who lived in the Southwest held their ground. Many still reside in their ancestral homes, and their oral histories, social practices, and material artifacts provide revelatory insight into the history of the region and the country as a whole.

Trudy Griffin-Pierce incorporates her lifelong passion for the people of the Southwest, especially the Navajo, into an absorbing narrative of pre- and postcontact Native experiences. She finds that, even though the policies of the U.S. government were meant to promote assimilation, Native peoples formed their own response to outside pressures, choosing to adapt rather than submit to external change. Griffin-Pierce provides a chronology of instances that have shaped present-day conditions in the region, as well as an extensive glossary of significant people, places, and events. Setting a precedent for ethical scholarship, she describes different methods for researching the Southwest and cites sources for further archaeological and comparative study. Completing the volume is a selection of key primary documents, literary works, films, Internet resources, and contact information for each Native community, enabling a more thorough investigation into specific tribes and nations.

The Columbia Guides to American Indian History and Culture also include:

The Columbia Guide to American Indians of the Great Plains
Loretta Fowler

The Columbia Guide to American Indians of the Northeast
Kathleen J. Bragdon

The Columbia Guide to American Indians of the Southeast
Theda Perdue and Michael D. Green

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