Indian Country: Travels in the American Southwest, 1840-1935

Item No: 28081

$ 24.95

  • Indian Country analyzes the works of Anglo writers and artists who encountered American Indians in the course of their travels in the Southwest during the one-hundred-year period beginning in 1840. Martin Padget looks at the accounts of government-sponsored explorer John Wesley Powell's and popular writers Helen Hunt Jackson and Charles F. Lummis. Padget addresses two topics: how the Southwest emerged as a distinctive region in the minds of late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century Americans, and what impact these conceptions, and the growing presence of Anglos, had on Indians in the region.

    • Author: Martin Padget
    • Paperback: 288 pages
    • University of New Mexico Press (February 16, 2006)
    • ISBN-10: 0826330290
    • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 9.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Martin Padget is a lecturer in American Studies in the Department of English at the University of Wales.
  • In this insightful work, Martin Padget looks first at the accounts produced by government-sponsored explorers, most notably John Wesley Powell's writings about the Colorado Plateau. He goes on to survey the writers who popularized the region in fiction and travelogue, including Helen Hunt Jackson and Charles F. Lummis. He also introduces us to Eldridge Ayer Burbank, an often-overlooked artist who between 1897 and 1917 made thousands of paintings and drawings of Indians from over 140 western tribes. Popular writers like Jackson and Lummis presented the American Indians as a "primitive culture waiting to be discovered" and experienced firsthand. Later, as Padget shows, Anglo activists for Indian rights, such as Mabel Dodge Luhan and Mary Austin, worked for the acceptance of other views of Native Americans and their cultures.
  • Native American and Pueblo people of the Southwest have been making clay pottery figures since ancient times. Their creation was discouraged by Christian missionaries and the form was not widely practiced in the 16th-19th centuries. Figurative pottery was revived in the 20th century and clay figurines have since become one of the most popular and widely collected Native American art forms. Storytellers are a type of clay figure that is unique to the Southwest. They were developed by Helen Cordero of Cochiti Pueblo in 1963 and traditionally depict a male elder telling stories to children, all with open mouths. Cordero was inspired by the traditional “Singing Mother” figure often represented in clay, and by her grandfather, a legendary Cochiti storyteller. In Pueblo culture, stories are passed down orally from generation to generation, and the Storyteller figure represents the importance of the storytelling tradition. Today, Native artists across the Southwest create Storytellers, sometimes depicting the elder and children as clowns, drummers, acrobats, cowboys or animals, and handcrafted figurative pottery continues to be one of the most exciting, colorful and successful pottery forms.

    Read our Native American Pottery Collector's Guide.
  • At Shumakolowa Native Arts, we are proud to bring you books, music and films that celebrate and illuminate Native American artists and the original authentic art forms that are distinctive to Native Americans of the Southwest. These works are written, produced, directed or recorded by Native American authors, filmmakers and musicians or were created in consultation with Native American experts. In our unique collection of media, we bring you the finest scholarly books recognized for their nuanced exploration of Native American culture; music that comes out of Native traditions of prayer, song and dance; and films that use the voices of Native American people to examine their stories, art and history.
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