Cherokee Stories of the Turtle Island Liars’ Club

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UNC Press Books, Oct 8, 2012 - Literary Collections - 264 pages
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Cherokee Stories of the Turtle Island Liars' Club paints a vivid, fascinating portrait of a community deeply grounded in tradition and dynamically engaged in the present. A collection of forty interwoven stories, conversations, and teachings about Western Cherokee life, beliefs, and the art of storytelling, the book orchestrates a multilayered conversation between a group of honored Cherokee elders, storytellers, and knowledge-keepers and the communities their stories touch. Collaborating with Hastings Shade, Sammy Still, Sequoyah Guess, and Woody Hansen, Cherokee scholar Christopher B. Teuton has assembled the first collection of traditional and contemporary Western Cherokee stories published in over forty years.
Not simply a compilation, Cherokee Stories of the Turtle Island Liars' Club explores the art of Cherokee storytelling, or as it is known in the Cherokee language, gagoga (gah-goh-ga), literally translated as "he or she is lying." The book reveals how the members of the Liars' Club understand the power and purposes of oral traditional stories and how these stories articulate Cherokee tradition, or "teachings," which the storytellers claim are fundamental to a construction of Cherokee selfhood and cultural belonging. Four of the stories are presented in both English and Cherokee.

 

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This book is a must read for Cherokee people. The oral accounts from Hastings Shade, Sammy Still. Sequoyah Guess, and Woody Hansen are superb. This book totally captivated me from the beginning with the creation story of my people. The different things that each mans family passed down to them is too cool. And I love that they were able to share this knowledge with me, through this awesome book. In this day and age, oral tradition is all but gone. I loved this book so much that I have given all my children and my niece one. I am honored to say that I know all of the author's personally, and that I give this book 5 stars for such an honest share of our tribes history. Well done .... 

Contents

Opening the Door
1
Alenihv Beginnings
17
Adanvsgvi Movements
81
Dideyohvsdi Teachings
133
Ulvsgedi The Wondrous
203
Standing in the Middle
249
Acknowledgments
251
Works Cited
253
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About the author (2012)

Christopher B. Teuton (Cherokee Nation) is professor and chair of the Department of American Indian Studies at the University of Washington and author of Deep Waters: The Textual Continuum in American Indian Literature.

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