by Joyce Libal, Martha McCollough

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Martha McCollough of the University of Nebraska is the consultant for the "North American Indians Today" series which includes this book. As with other works in the series, the first two chapters are devoted to the complicated history of the Seminole, perhaps the only eastern tribe never conquered by the United States government, at least in Florida. A number of Seminole were captured and sent to Oklahoma, however, so there is also a group of Seminole in that state. There are chapters about the current government of both groups, their spiritual beliefs (largely Christian by now), their social structure, traditional and contemporary art forms, and the accomplishments and contributions of Seminole individuals to their tribes and the larger world. A final chapter deals with challenges of today and hopes for tomorrow. In general, this is an informative and useful book, but several flaws must be noted. In several places the author asserts that the Seminole are matriarchal when she means to say they are matrilineal. This is not just a technical distinction. Matriarchal means "ruled in general by women," which the traditional Seminole never were. Matrilineal means that membership in particular family groups is inherited through the female line, which is indeed true of the Seminole. Unfortunately, the glossary gives the wrong definition for matriarchal. Also, several different spelling systems are used for the Seminole words presented, one of which is unpronounceable for English speakers and there is no pronunciation guide. There is a list of further readings, sources of more information, a glossary, and an index at the back of the book. The many excellent photos are mainly by Benjamin Stewart.2004, Mason Crest Publishers, Ages 10 up.
—Wesley Jernigan

Product Details

Mason Crest Publishers
Publication date:
North American Indians Today Series
Product dimensions:
7.60(w) x 9.60(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

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