Before the Great Spirit: The Many Faces of Sioux Spirituality

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University of New Mexico Press, 1998 - Religion - 175 pages
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In four previous books, Julian Rice has examined the oral and written narratives of the Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota in order to elucidate the core cultural values of the Sioux people. In Before the Great Spirit he explores the spiritual values that informed Sioux attitudes surrounding warriors, tricksters, spirits, games, and conflict. Countering the widespread myths that both denigrate and appropriate Indian spirituality, Rice examines accounts written in the 1830s by Congregationalist ministers Samuel and Gideon Pond and Stephen R. Riggs; Ella Deloria, a Yankton Nakota linguist; Wilson D. Wallis, a Canadian anthropologist; native Lakota George Bushotter; and physician James R. Walker in order to clearly delineate Sioux thought from the biases and perspectives of these observers. In affirming the nondogmatic and richly pluralist nature of Sioux thought and theology, Rice vigorously enters the lively scholarly debate over Native American tradition and heritage.

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About the author (1998)

Julian Rice, now retired, was professor of English at Florida Atlantic University. His books include Black Elk's Story (1991), Deer Women and Elk Men (1992), and Kubrick s Hope (Scarecrow, 2008).

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