Navajo Land, Navajo Culture: The Utah Experience in the Twentieth Century

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In Navajo Land, Navajo Culture, Robert S. McPherson presents an intimate history of the Diné, or Navajo people, of southeastern Utah. Moving beyond standard history by incorporating Native voices, the author shows how the Dine's culture and economy have both persisted and changed during the twentieth century.

As the dominant white culture increasingly affected their worldview, these Navajos adjusted to change, took what they perceived as beneficial, and shaped or filtered outside influences to preserve traditional values. With guidance from Navajo elders, McPherson describes varied experiences ranging from traditional deer hunting to livestock reduction, from bartering at a trading post to acting in John Ford movies, and from the coming of the automobile to the burgeoning of the tourist industry.

Clearly written and richly detailed, this book offers new perspectives on a people who have adapted to new conditions while shaping their own destiny.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780806134109
  • Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 9.84 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert S. McPherson is author of Navajo Land, Navajo Culture: The Utah Experience in the Twentieth Century and six other books about the history and culture of the Four Corners region. He is Vice President of the College of Eastern Utah's San Juan Campus.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Ch. 1 Prologue to the Present: Setting the Stage for the Twentieth Century 3
Ch. 2 Navajo and Ute Deer Hunting: Consecration versus Desecration 21
Ch. 3 Government Farmers and the Navajos: The San Juan Experience, 1892-1933 44
Ch. 4 Naalyehe Ba Hooghan, "House of Merchandise": Navajo Trading Posts as an Institution of Cultural Change, 1900-1930 65
Ch. 5 The Chidi and Flying Metal Come to the Navajos: Thoughts on Technology and Initial Cultural Contact 84
Ch. 6 History Repeats Itself: Navajo Livestock Reduction in Southeastern Utah, 1933-1946 102
Ch. 7 Seeing as Believing: Navajo and Anglo Perceptions of Tourism in Southeastern Utah, 1910-1990 121
Ch. 8 Indians Playing Indians: Navajos and the Film Industry in Monument Valley, 1938-1964 142
Ch. 9 Digging the Bones of Yeiitsoh: Navajos in the Uranium Industry of Southeastern Utah 158
Ch. 10 Poverty, Politics, and Petroleum: The Utah Navajos and the Aneth Oil Field 179
Ch. 11 From Dezba to "John": The Changing Role of Navajo Women in Southeastern Utah 189
Ch. 12 Conclusion: A Glance at the Present, a Glimpse of the Future 220
Notes 237
Bibliography 273
Index 287
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