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Star Songs and Water Spirits: A Great Lakes Native Reader
     

Star Songs and Water Spirits: A Great Lakes Native Reader

by Victoria Brehm
 

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THE GREAT LAKES NATIVE WORLD

From the deep past to the present, here are the stories, songs, poetry, speeches, autobiography, fiction, and art of the Great Lakes Native nations. Set in the natural environment of the seasonal year, the selections explain cultural concepts and show how modern Native literature reflects tradition. Elders, war chiefs, religious

Overview

THE GREAT LAKES NATIVE WORLD

From the deep past to the present, here are the stories, songs, poetry, speeches, autobiography, fiction, and art of the Great Lakes Native nations. Set in the natural environment of the seasonal year, the selections explain cultural concepts and show how modern Native literature reflects tradition. Elders, war chiefs, religious leaders, and contemporary artists share

  • Sacred stories of the creation of the world
  • Stories of the stars
  • Tales of heroes and monsters
  • Narratives of hunting, fishing, and food gathering
  • Speeches and writings about war
  • Personal narratives and essays
  • Contemporary fiction and poetry

This collection surveys all the major types and themes of lakes Native literatures, enriched by music, the visual arts, and a detailed timeline of historical events.

Victoria Brehm, Ph.D. is a retired professor of American literature who writes about Great Lakes literature and history. She taught graduate and undergraduate classes in Great Lakes Native literature for many years.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A comprehensive collection of traditional and contemporary Great Lakes Native literatures—stories, songs, poetry, speeches, autobiography, and fiction, enriched by music, visual arts, and a historic timeline."  —OHS  Bulletin (Ontario Historical Society)

"Brehm, a retired professor of American literature, collected native stories, songs, poetry, speeches, fiction, autobiography and art from the Great Lakes."  —Buffalo News (New York)

"Offering insight into the arts of Great Lakes Native nations, this collection of stories, songs, poetry, speeches, autobiographies, and fiction, spans the centuries from deep past to the present."  —Mighty Ape (New Zealand)

"Star Songs and Water: A Great Lakes Native Reader" should be savored one writing at a time. Readers should allow the writings to simmer as they enjoy the deep rich history of Great Lakes American Indians. —The Grand Rapids Press (Michigan)

"This impressively thorough reader is organized seasonally, showing the connection of myth to the land and its changes. Eloquent introductions provide context for the historical accounts, and poems from contemporary Great Lakes Native writers connect past and present. An excellent resource for all Great Lakes–area libraries and for others with active American Indian collections." —Booklist Online

"While the selections of the book are based on the products of Great Lakes American Indians, those who enjoy Native history and culture will find this book a real gem." —Native News Network

"Anyone with an interest in Native American cultures will find this book a delight. Stories, songs, poetry, speeches, autobiographies, fiction, and art of the Great Lakes Native nations are sprinkled with photos and illustrations that stretch out over more than 500 pages." —MENSA Bulletin

Various
Lake Superior Magazine
“Readers of this book will come away more enlightened and more connected to the region and each other.”
— Konnie LeMay(click here to read the full review)

Booklist Online
“Among the Indian nations of America, those of the Great Lakes are often overlooked in popular culture and, indeed, even in scholarly publishing. Much more literature is available about the pueblo nations of the Southwest, the eagle-feathered Plains Indians, and the whale-hunting Arctic peoples than about the dozens of groups who lived in the Midwest, making their living by fishing, hunting, and cultivating “the three sisters”—corn, beans, and squash.

“Yet those groups, including the Ojibwe, Menominee, Ho-Chunk, Miami, Seneca, Huron, and others, have complex cultures rich in significant myths and legends. This impressively thorough reader is organized seasonally, showing the connection of myth to the land and its changes. Eloquent introductions provide context for the historical accounts, and poems from contemporary Great Lakes Native writers connect past and present. An excellent resource for all Great Lakes–area libraries and for others with active American Indian collections.”

— Patricia Monaghan

MENSA Bulletin
“Anyone with an interest in Native American cultures will find this book a delight.”

Grand Rapids Press
“The book provides a bridge from historic American Indians . . . to contemporary writers. [It] should be savored, one writing at a time.”

Ontario Historical Society
“A comprehensive collection of traditional and contemporary Great Lakes Native literatures—stories, songs, poetry, speeches, autobiography, and fiction—enriched by music, visual arts, and a historic timeline.”

Midwest Book Review Bookwatch
“A precious resource to encourage further exploration. Truly a beautiful patchwork sampler of many cultures and entities’ distilled knowledge and traditions in the form of their stories and literature. Perhaps it might be thought of as a Great Lakes Native American Norton Anthology, if that is not a demeaning comparison.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780984334001
Publisher:
Ladyslipper Press
Publication date:
11/01/2010
Edition description:
Many samples of Native languages, including seasons and stories, from all the Native language families around the Great Lakes.
Pages:
524
Product dimensions:
7.50(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

Victoria Brehm, Ph.D. is a retired professor of American literature and the author of Sweetwater, Storms, and Spirits: Stories of the Great Lakes, The Women's Great Lakes Reader, A Little History of My Forest Life and numerous scholarly studies about Great Lakes subjects—maritime, Native, and women's history. A National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow, and a member of Who's Who in the Midwest, she earned degrees from the University of Michigan and the University of Iowa. She lives in Tustin, Michigan.

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