Sending My Heart Back Across the Years: Tradition and Innovation in Native American Autobiography

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Oxford University Press, Mar 12, 1992 - Literary Criticism - 256 pages
Using contemporary autobiography theory and literary, historical, and ethnographic approaches, Wong explores the transformation of Native American autobiography from pre-contact oral and pictographic personal narratives through late nineteenth-/early twentieth-century life histories to written contemporary autobiographies. This book expands the definition of autobiography to include non-written forms of personal narrative and non-Western concepts of self, highlighting the incorporation of traditional tribal modes of self-narration with Western forms of autobiography and charting the historical transition from orality to literacy.
 

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Contents

Introduction
3
1 Native American SelfNarration and Autobiography Theory
11
Coup Tales Vision Stories and Naming Practices
25
Plains Indian Sketchbooks Diaries and Text Construction
57
The Life Histories of PlentyCoups PrettyShield Sam Blowsnake and Mountain Wolf Woman
88
Nicholas Black Elk and Charles Alexander Eastman
117
N Scott Momaday and Leslie Marmon Silko
153
Notes
201
Works Cited
225
Index
237
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About the author (1992)


Hertha D. Sweet Wong is Associate Professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley. She is the author of Sending My Heart Back Across the Years: Tradition and Innovation in Native American Autobiography; editor of Louise Erdrich's Love Medicine: A Casebook; and co-editor with John
Elder of Family of Earth and Sky: Indigenous Tales of Nature from Around the World.
Jana Sequoya Magdaleno lives in Northern California where her focus is on Native community health and healing practices.

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