New PDF release: The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian

By Paula Gunn Allen

ISBN-10: 0807046175

ISBN-13: 9780807046173

This pioneering paintings, first released in 1986, records the continued power of yankee Indian traditions and the an important function of girls in these traditions.

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Extra resources for The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions

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Until Handsome Lake’s time, the sachems were chosen from certain families by the Matrons of their clans and were subject to impeachment by the Matrons should they prove inadequate or derelict in carrying out their duties as envisioned by the Matrons and set forth in the Law of the Great Peace of the Iroquois Confederacy. 5 At the end of the Revolutionary War, the Americans declared the Iroquois living on the American side of the United States– Canadian border defeated. Pressed from all sides, their fields burned and salted, their daily life disrupted, and the traditional power of the Matrons under assault from the missionaries who flocked to Iroquois country to “civilize” them, the recently powerful Iroquois became a subject, captive people.

Ethnohistorians have traditionally assigned male gender to native figures in the documentary record unless otherwise identified. They have also tended to not identify native individuals as leaders unless so identified in the specific source. This policy, while properly cautious, has fostered the notion that all native persons mentioned in the documentation were both male and commoners unless otherwise identified. 17 And that’s not all it successfully achieves. It falsifies the record of people who are not able to set it straight; it reinforces patriarchal socialization among all Americans, who are thus led to believe that there have never been any alternative structures; it gives Anglo-Europeans the idea that Indian societies were beneath the level of organization of western nations, justifying colonization by presumption of lower stature; it masks the genocide attendant on the falsification of evidence, as it masks the gynocidal motive behind the genocide.

The goddess Uretsete gave birth to twin boys, and one of these boys was raised by the other sister, who later married him. Of this union the Pueblo race was born. Some tales (probably of fairly recent origin) make Uretsete the alien sister and Naotsete the Indian sister. Other stories, as noted earlier, make Uretsete male at some undetermined point (but “he” always starts as female). The Indian sister Uretsete is later known as Iyatiku, or Ic’city, and is seen as essentially the same as her. But it is reasonable to conjecture that Uretsete is the prototype for the hotchin, while the cacique (town chief) is derived from the figure of Naotsete.

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The Sacred Hoop: Recovering the Feminine in American Indian Traditions by Paula Gunn Allen

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