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An Archaeology of the Soul: NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN BELIEF AND RITUAL 0th Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0252066023
ISBN-10: 0252066022
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Looking beyond regional barriers, An Archaeology Of The Soul offers new depths of insight into American Indian ethnography. Hall uncovers the lineage and kinship shared by Native North Americans through the perspectives of history, archaeology, archaeoastronomy, biological anthropology, linguistics, and mythology.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: University of Illinois Press (April 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0252066022
  • ISBN-13: 978-0252066023
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.7 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,139,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I find this book extremely pleasing and thought-provoking. Using a wealth of sources, Hall shows the persistence of Native American belief into modern times among a number of tribal groups. It is an overview that enabled me to see how deeply rooted some of today's Indian religion is in an ancient past. Not an easy read, but it is richly rewarding for the patient reader, and exciting in the breadth of its insight and dimensions.
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Format: Paperback
Culture Historical in nature. Draws from a wide range of ethnographic and historical sources,weaving data into a general interpretation of Eastern North American Indian mortuary ritual. Author emphasizes that the more things seem to have changed, the more they actually remained the same. Employs a less-than-direct historical approach to support a limited consideration of the archaeological record. This well written and ethnographically comprehensive inquiry challenges convention by speculating beyond the obvious. Flannery's "Old Timer" would have loved it. Recommended as an undergraduate text or fireside reader.
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Format: Paperback
This book is different from many of the Native American books available in either historical, spiritual, or artistic writing in that it presents information from an archeological/anthropological lens. Written for the interested layperson, it is especially good for researching aspects of belief and ritual related to death and dying practices. Occasionally it presents evidence found in early North American mounds; the work seeks to tie in archeological evidence with development of known ritual and practice, and as such, this book adds much that is not available in common sources. The weakness of the work lies in the fact that it is somewhat dated; the 1997 publication date seems at times like it is seventy years earlier, because information cited is often from the early twentieth century, and offers little reflection or evidence from more recent archeological or anthropological work. What may be taken as a strength or a weakness is the tendency of the author to give his own interpretation of the evolution of beliefs presented, and this he does without citing Native people as primary source, something which I find almost offensive personally. Of course, given the tendency of the past quarter century in Native American studies to romanticize Nicholas Black Elk (I find a generation of university graduate students who accept Neilhardt's writings as gospel, in spite of Damian Costello's recent, brilliant study of Black Elk's actual adult life, most of which was spent as a Catholic catechist on the Pine Ridge Reservation). So while this book is in one sense a must-have, it should be read with caution and the constant question, "What would the Native Spiritual Director /Elder in this Tribe say about this legend, ritual or belief?" So do get this book, but order Costello as a balance, and seek to meet some actual Native sources.
Ah-ho.
Arlene Bodmer Harouff
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