Mabel McKay: Weaving the Dream

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University of California Press, Sep 1, 1994 - Literary Criticism - 178 pages
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A world-renowned Pomo basket weaver and medicine woman, Mabel McKay expressed her genius through her celebrated baskets, her Dreams, her cures, and the stories with which she kept her culture alive. She spent her life teaching others how the spirit speaks through the Dream, how the spirit heals, and how the spirit demands to be heard.

Greg Sarris weaves together stories from Mabel McKay's life with an account of how he tried, and she resisted, telling her story straight—the white people's way. Sarris, an Indian of mixed-blood heritage, finds his own story in his search for Mabel McKay's. Beautifully narrated, Weaving the Dream initiates the reader into Pomo culture and demonstrates how a woman who worked most of her life in a cannery could become a great healer and an artist whose baskets were collected by the Smithsonian.

Hearing Mabel McKay's life story, we see that distinctions between material and spiritual and between mundane and magical disappear. What remains is a timeless way of healing, of making art, and of being in the world.

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Mabel McKay: weaving the dream

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In his endeavor to write about McKay, the celebrated Pomo basket weaver and medicine woman, Sarris (English, UCLA) has been able to find his own identity. Part American Indian, Filipino, and Jewish ... Read full review

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Prayer Basket

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About the author (1994)

Part American Indian, Filipino, and Jewish, Greg Sarris was adopted at birth and raised in both Indian and white families. He is Professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles, and chief of the Coast Miwok tribe. He is the author of Keeping Slug Woman Alive: Essays Toward a Holistic Approach to American Indian Texts (California, 1993), editor of Rattles and Clappers: An Anthology of California Indian Writing (1994), and author of a volume of short stories, Grand Avenue (1994).

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