A Long Good Walk. On a bright and breezy May morning, a nine year old boy named Charlie overhears On a bright and breezy May morning, a nine year old boy named Charlie overhears his mother's hushed and desperate conversation, realizes its implications and sets out on a mission to do the unthinkable-- to shoot his grandmother's abusive and View Product.
This is a combined literature and grammar unit that contains everything you need to teach This is a combined literature and grammar unit that contains everything you need to teach the novel and more! Included in the unit are pre-reading, active-reading and post-reading activities with grammar lessons, literary activities, a literary terms matching quiz, a A Long Walk to Wimbledon. First published in , this is a London where the worst has happened. There have There have been riots, huge uncontrolled fires, outbreaks of savage looting, artillery battles, mass flights.
The great city lies three parts deserted, open to marauding gangs and For ten long years, Oscar Campbell has done everything from picking up his boss's drycleaning For ten long years, Oscar Campbell has done everything from picking up his boss's drycleaning to FedExing her tropical fish. But Not for Long: A Novel. Greta has left her old life behind and moved into a sustainable foods co-op in Greta has left her old life behind and moved into a sustainable foods co-op in Madison, Wisconsin.
Just as she begins to settle in with her two housemates, the husband she left behind appears on their porch, drunk. His arrival Cast Down but Not Destroyed. A Glimpse of Through. Learning to Walk. Each poem is based on my observations either within nature or my home. Bilingual education programs and broadcast and publishing programs in the Navajo language are also using the tools of change to preserve and strengthen traditional cultural values and language. Navajo traditional life has remained strong. In an anthropologist interviewed an entire community of several hundred Navajos and could not find even one adult over the age of 35 who had not received traditional medical care from a "singer," a Navajo medicine man called a Hataali.
Today, when a new health care facility is built on the reservation it includes a room for the traditional practice of medicine by members of the Navajo Medicine Man's Association. Virtually all of the 3, Navajos who served in World War II underwent the cleansing of the Enemyway ceremony upon their return from the war. There are 24 chantway ceremonies performed by singers. Some last up to nine days and require the assistance of dozens of helpers, especially dancers. Twelve hundred different sandpainting designs are available to the medicine men for the chantways.
Large numbers of Navajos also tend to identify themselves as Christians , with most of them mixing elements of both traditional belief and Christianity. In a survey, between 25 and 50 percent called themselves Christians, the percentage varying widely by region and gender. Twenty-five thousand Navajos belong to the Native American Church , and thousands more attend its peyote ceremonies but do not belong to the church. In the late s the tribal council approved the religious use of peyote, ending 27 years of persecution.
In the church began to spread to the south into the Navajo Nation, and it grew strong among the Navajos in the s. The premier annual events open to visitors are the Navajo Fairs. The dance competition powwow draws dancers from throughout the continent. Other Navajo fairs are also held at other times during the year. All-Indian Rodeos are also popular, as are competition powwows. Except for powwow competition dances and singing, most Navajo traditional dances and songs are a part of healing ceremonies, at which visitors are allowed only with the permission of the family.
Photography and video or tape recording of the ceremonies are not permitted without the express authorization of the healers. Charlotte Heth of the Department of Ethnomusicology, University of California , Los Angeles , noted in a chapter of Native America: Portrait of the Peoples, that "Apache and Navajo song style are similar: tense, nasal voices; rhythmic pulsation; clear articulation of words in alternating sections with vocables. Both Apache Crown Dancers and Navajo Yeibichei Night Chant dancers wear masks and sing partially in falsetto or in voices imitating the supernaturals.
The suicide rate among Navajos is 30 percent higher than the national average. Another severe problem is alcoholism. Both of these problems are exacerbated by poverty: more than half of all Navajos live below the poverty line. Four full-service Indian hospitals are located in northwestern New Mexico. The one at Gallup is the largest in the region. Indian Health Centers facilities staffed by health professionals, open at least 40 hours per week, and catering to the general public are located at Ft.
In keeping with the recent trend throughout the United States, Navajos are now administering many of their own health care facilities, taking over their operation from the Public Health Service. Traditional Navajo healers are called Hataali, or "singers". Traditional Navajo medical practice treats the whole person, not just the illness, and is not conducted in isolation but in a ceremony that includes the patient's relatives. The ceremony can last from three to nine days depending upon the illness being treated and the ceremony to be performed.
Illness to the Navajos means that there is disharmony in the universe. Proper order is restored with sand paintings in a cleansing and healing ceremony. There are approximately 1, designs that can be used; most can be created within the size of the average hogan floor, about six feet by six feet, though some are as large as 12 feet in diameter and some as small as one foot in diameter. The Hataali may have several helpers in the creation of the intricate patterns.
Dancers also assist them. In some ceremonies, such as the nine-day Yei-Bei-Chei, 15 or 16 teams of 11 members each dance throughout the night while the singer and his helpers chant prayers. When the painting is ready the patient sits in the middle of it. The singer then transforms the orderliness of the painting, symbolic of its cleanliness, goodness, and harmony, into the patient and puts the illness from the patient into the painting.
The sand painting is then discarded. Many years of apprenticeship are required to learn the designs of the sand paintings and the songs that accompany them, skills that have been passed down through many generations. Most Hataali are able to perform only a few of the many ceremonies practiced by the Navajos, because each ceremony takes so long to learn.
Sand painting is now also done for commercial purposes at public displays, but the paintings are not the same ones used in the healing rituals. The Athapaskan language family is one of three families within the Na-Dene language phylum. The other two, the Tlingit family and the Haida family, are language isolates in the far north, Tlingit in southeast Alaska, and Haida in British Columbia.
Na-Dene is one of the most widely distributed language phyla in North America. In approximately , Navajos on the reservation still spoke Navajo fluently. No tribe in North America has been more vigorously studied by anthropologists than the Navajos. When a man marries, he moves into the household of the wife's extended family. The Navajos joke that a Navajo family consists of a grandmother, her married daughters and their husbands, her daughters' children, and an anthropologist.
A Navajo is "born to" the mother's clan and "born for" the father's clan. The importance of clans, the membership of which is dispersed throughout the nation for each clan, has gradually diminished in favor of the increasingly important role of the Chapter House, the significance of which is based on the geographical proximity of its members. Traditional prohibitions against marrying within one's own clan are beginning to break down. The girl's puberty ceremony, her kinaalda, is a major event in Navajo family life. Navajos maintain strong ties with relatives, even when they leave the reservation.
It is not uncommon for Navajos working in urban centers to send money home to relatives. On the reservation, an extended family may have only one wage-earning worker. Other family members busy themselves with traditional endeavors, from stock tending to weaving. From the late s until the s, the local trading post was the preeminent financial and commercial institution for most Navajos, serving as a local bank where silver and turquoise could be pawned , a post office, and a store. One of the most famous, Hubbell's Trading Post, is now a national monument. Traders served the community as interpreters, business managers, funeral directors, grave diggers, and gossip columnists.
The automobile and big discount stores in the urban centers at the fringes of the nation have greatly diminished the role of the trading posts. Navajo jewelry, especially work done in silver and turquoise, is internationally famous. Navajo silversmithing dates from , when a Mexican silversmith arrived at Fort Defiance in what is now Arizona.
The Navajo 'Atsidi Sani learned the craft from him and taught it to others. By several Navajos were working with silver, and by they had begun to combine turquoise with their designs. At the turn of the century the Fred Harvey Company asked Navajo silversmiths to make lighter pieces for the tourist trade and guaranteed them a sales outlet. Today silversmithing is a widespread craft practiced by many Navajos.
Weaving is also an important economic activity throughout the nation. Navajo weaving has undergone many changes in designs. Navajos are continually creating new ones, and various locations within the nation have become famous for particular types of rugs and patterns. Weaving underwent a revival in the s, when Chinle weavers introduced the multicolored Wide Ruins, Crystal, and Pine Springs patterns. The rug weavers auction at Crownpoint is known worldwide. An treaty provided for schools for Navajo children.
The number of schools increased greatly after compulsory school attendance was mandated in In a Navajo headman in Utah was imprisoned without trial for a year and a half for speaking out against forced removal of local children to the Shiprock Boarding School. Others were strongly in favor of schools, especially after 19 influential Navajo headmen were exposed to the outside world at the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
Until Navajo schools were operated by missionaries, who were frequently more interested in attempting to eradicate the Navajo religion, culture, and language than in educating their charges. The establishment of boarding schools far from Navajo homes, subjected Navajo children to the trauma of being removed from their families and their cultures for extended periods of time. Instruction was conducted only in English. With the secularization of the federally maintained Navajo public school system in civil servants replaced the missionaries, but lack of understanding and appreciation of Navajo culture — and instruction only in English — continued to be the norm.
Some religious-affiliated schools continue to the present day, but they display a greater appreciation for Navajo culture and traditions than their nineteenth-century predecessors. By , 93 percent of Navajo children were in school. In the s Navajos began to exercise much stronger management of their children's education with the establishment of community-controlled contract schools. The Rough Rock Demonstration School was the first of these schools.
It introduced bilingual education for young children, the adult training of Navajo medicine men, and other innovative programs based on the perceived needs of the local community. It should be pointed out that the bilingual education introduced was, and is, to teach Navajo language, not to transition into English. This is not an additional tool of assimilation, but rather a reinforcement of traditional language and culture. Following the lead of the Navajos, there are now a total of 29 Indian institutions of higher education in the United States, all members of an American Indian higher education consortium.
Navajo Community College Press is a leading native-owned academic press. A number of state supported baccalaureate institutions are located near the Navajo Nation. Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. In more than 4, Navajos were attending college. Nearly every Navajo extended family has members who engage in silversmithing and weaving as a matter of occasional economic enterprise. Farming and stock raising are still important in the economic life of the nation. But the largest employers of Navajo people are the federal and tribal governments. The Navajos have their own parks and recreation department, fish and wildlife department, police department, educational programs, and health service, as well as many other jobs in tribal government and administration.
Many federal agencies have offices either on or near the reservation. It is located at Navajo, New Mexico, the only industrial town on the reservation, which was created and planned to serve the needs of its industry. Until the early twentieth century Navajos were able to continue deriving their livelihood from their traditional practices of stockraising. Since the s fewer and fewer Navajos have been able to maintain themselves in this manner. Chronic high rates of unemployment and dependency on governmental assistance have gradually replaced the traditional way of life. By a study released by the Navajo Office of Program Development found that only 20, people were employed on the reservation, of which 71 percent were Navajos.
Nine communities were found to account for 84 percent of the jobs held by Navajo people: Shiprock, 3,; Chinle, 2,; Window Rock, 2,; Ft. Public service jobs — health, education, and government — were found to account for nearly three-fourths of all employment on the reservation. In the Navajo unemployment rate was 67 percent. In the unemployment rate was 36 percent and remained at about that level in Since the late s, developing projects have been diversifying employment within the Navajo Nation. The Navajo Indian Irrigation Project NIIP is projected to irrigate , acres of cropland from water impounded in the upper San Juan River basin, using open canals, pipelines, lift stations, and overhead sprinkler systems.
It includes agribusiness plant sites, grazing lands and a feedlot for cattle production, and an experimental research station. Instituted by act of Congress in , the first 10, acres were brought into irrigation in , producing crops of barley and cabbage. By the total irrigated acreage had increased to 40, acres, and crop diversification had added alfalfa, pinto beans, corn, and milo. In a cattle feedlot operation began to make use of grain and forage crop production.
NAPI showed its first profit in By more than half of the projected acreage had been brought under irrigation. A coal-gasification plant near Burnham and Navajo-Exxon uranium leases, along with the irrigation project, are making northwestern New Mexico and the eastern portion of the Navajo reservation the focus of new economic activity. Uranium mining, however, has produced health risks, including alarmingly high rates of cancer.
In a broken tailings dam belonging to United Nuclear Corporation at Church Rock, New Mexico, discharged million gallons of radioactive water into the Puerco River — the largest release of radioactivity in United States history. Because of their legal status, Navajo business-people must deal with state and federal agencies as well as Navajo officials and must pay both state and Navajo taxes.
In addition, complicated paperwork requirements for obtaining business licenses and land leases for businesses hamper start-up. IINA which means "life" in Navajo , an initiative started by Navajo Duane "Chili" Yazzi, is currently underway, and is aimed at reducing red tape by delegating control to local tribal chapters. The Navajo people's biggest economic ventures have been coal leases. By the Navajo Nation had the largest coal mine in the world.
The and Black Mesa coal leases to Peabody Coal Company have become a source of controversy within the nation, as more and more Navajos decry the scouring of their land, the displacement of families for the sake of mining activity, and the threat to sacred places posed by mining operations. Little has been done to develop tourism, despite its potential as a source of income.
Only four motels exist on the reservation, in contrast with neighboring Gallup, New Mexico, which has more than Other economic ventures under way include shopping centers and motels. Hunting and fishing provide economic activity and jobs in the portion of the reservation lying in northwestern New Mexico, where 16 lakes offer fishing for trout, channel catfish, bass, northern pike, and bluegill. Hunting permits may be obtained for deer, turkey, bear, and small game. The basic unit of local government in the Navajo Nation is the Chapter, each with its own Chapter House. The Chapter system was created in as a means of addressing agricultural problems at a local level.
Before the s, the nation had no centrally organized tribal government. Like many other Indian nations, the tribe was forced to create a central authority by the United States. For the Navajos, the seminal event was the discovery of oil on the reservation in , after which the United States desired some centralized governmental authority for the Navajos for the purpose of executing oil leases, largely for the benefit of non-Navajos.
At first the Bureau of Indian Affairs appointed three Navajos to execute mineral leases. In this arrangement gave way to a plan for each of several Navajo agencies to provide representatives for the Navajo government. Navajos have served with distinction in the armed forces of the United States in every war in the twentieth century, including World War I , even though they — and other reservation Indians — did not become citizens of the United States until citizenship was extended to them by an act of Congress in Marine Corps, when they employed the Navajo language for military communication in the field as the Marines stormed Japanese-held islands in the Pacific.
They have become known to posterity as the Navajo Code Talkers. Philip Johnson , born to missionaries and raised on the Navajo reservation, is credited with a leading role in the formation of the Navajo Code Talkers. As a child he learned fluent Navajo, as well as Navajo culture and traditions. At the age of nine he served as interpreter for a Navajo delegation that traveled to Washington, D. When war broke out with Japan in , Johnson learned that the military hoped to develop a code using American Indians as signal-men. Within a year the Marine Corps authorized the program, which at first was classified as top secret.
Johnson, though over age, was allowed to enlist in the Corps and was assigned to help supervise the establishment of the program at Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, California. The first group to receive training consisted of 29 Navajos who underwent basic boot camp training at the San Diego Marine Corps Recruit Depot. They were then sent for four weeks to the Field Signal Battalion Training Center at Camp Pendleton, where they received hours of instruction in basic communications procedures and equipment.
They were later deployed to Guadalcanal, where their use of the Navajo language for radio communication in the field proved so effective that recruitment for the program was expanded. By the end of the war they had been assigned to all six Marine divisions in the Pacific and had taken part in every assault — from Guadalcanal in to Okinawa in Today the surviving Navajo Code Talkers maintain an active veterans' organization. In , at the Fourth Marine Division Association reunion in Chicago, they were presented with a medallion specially minted in commemoration of their services. Much friction has resulted between the Navajos and the United States over the management of Navajo livestock grazing.
The original Navajo Reservation in encompassed only a small portion of the ancestral Navajo rangelands. The size of the reservation tripled between and the mids by 14 additions of blocks of land from to This would give the appearance of a rapidly expanding amount of rangeland available to the Navajos. In fact, just the opposite was true. When the Navajos returned to their homeland from the Bosque Redondo in , the government issued them 1, goats and 14, sheep to begin replacing the herds that the U. Army and New Mexico militia had either slaughtered or confiscated.
In the Navajos were issued an additional 10, sheep. With practically no Anglo encroachment on their ancestral rangeland, reservation boundaries had little meaning. The Navajos spread out over their old estate and their herds began increasing. The Bureau of Indian Affairs forbade the selling of breeding stock, eager to see the Navajos regain self-sufficiency.
The Navajo population increased steadily, from an estimated 10, to 12, in to nearly 40, by , and their herds increased accordingly, though there were large fluctuations in the numbers year by year due to occasional drought and disease. At the same time the appropriation of the ancestral rangelands outside the reservation boundaries by Anglo cattle operations and other interests had accelerated, forcing. By the s a serious soil erosion problem on the reservation was being blamed on overgrazing. The Navajos tried to alleviate the problem by seeking more land and renewed access to the ancestral rangelands from which they had gradually been forced off.
The United States believed that a solution to the problem was to force Navajo livestock reductions by killing the animals it deemed to be unnecessary. Thus began a year conflict between the Navajos and the United States, in which the U. The tool of the government in this matter was the creation of land management districts, first established in and adjusted to their preset boundaries in In attempting to change Navajo livestock practices, the U.
Today the federal land management districts on the reservation are still important factors in Navajo livestock practices. The grazing committees of the Navajo Chapter Houses must work closely with the districts to set the herd size for each range. The extreme turmoil that the stock reduction crisis caused in traditional Navajo life — and the tactics used by the U. Indians in Arizona and New Mexico were not allowed to vote in state and national elections until In Utah finally allowed Indians living on reservations to vote — the last remaining state to do so.
It required a U. Supreme Court ruling to force Apache County, Arizona, where the population was 70 percent Navajo, to allow Navajos to serve on its board of supervisors. As of no Native American had ever been elected to public office in Utah. In that year the U. The next year a Navajo was elected county commissioner. The most divisive issue among the Navajos in recent years, and the cause of the greatest strain in relations with the United States, has been the so-called "Navajo-Hopi Land Dispute," in which thousands of Navajos have been forced to relocate from lands that were jointly held by the two tribes since Many prominent Navajos and some prominent Hopis believe that the relocation of the Navajos and the division of the Joint Use Area has been undertaken by the U.
Among the first Navajos to earn a Ph. Annie Dodge Wauneka — is a public health educator responsible for largely eliminating tuberculosis among the Navajo Indians. Peterson Zah — is an educator and leader who has devoted his life to serving the Navajo people and retaining Navajo culture, especially among young people. In Zah was elected the first president of the Navajo people; he was later awarded the Humanitarian Award from the City of Albuquerque and an honorary doctorate from Santa Fe College. Harrison Begay — is one of the most famous of all Navajo painters.
Noted for their sinuous delicacy of line, meticulous detail, restrained palette, and elegance of composition, his watercolors and silkscreen prints have won 13 major awards. Carl Nelson Gorman — is a prominent Navajo artist whose oil paintings and silk screening have won acclaim for their divergence from traditional Indian art forms.
Rudolpf Carl Gorman — is one of the most prominent contemporary Native American artists of the twentieth century. His art combines the traditional with the nontraditional in style and form. Navajo author Vee Browne has achieved national recognition with her retellings of Navajo creation stories. Her books have included Monster Slayer and Monster Birds, a children's biography of Osage international ballet star Maria Tallchief , and a volume in a new series of Native American animal stories from Scholastic books.
A guidance counselor by training, Browne is active in helping emerging Native American writers hone their skills and find outlets for their work, serving as a mentor in the Wordcraft Circle of Native American Mentor and Apprentice Writers. Elizabeth Woody — , born on the Navajo Nation but raised mostly in the Pacific Northwest, has been influenced by the Pacific Northwest tribes as well as her Navajo heritage. Woody's poetry has been anthologized in Returning the Gift and Durable Breath; her short fiction, "Home Cooking," has been anthologized in Talking Leaves; her nonfiction, "Warm Springs," has been anthologized in Native America.
Woody now teaches at the Institute of American Indian Arts. Yazzie's work is also featured in New America, and she worked on the Navajo-English dictionary project. Rex Jim, a highly regarded medicine man , is the first author to have published a volume of poetry in Navajo, with no translation, with a major university press Ahi'Ni'Nikisheegiizh, Princeton University Press.
Tohe received her Ph. Tohe's latest project is a children's play for the Omaha Emmy Gifford Children's theater. Lucy Tapahonso — is the author of four books of poetry, including Saanii Dahataa. She is an assistant professor at the University of Kansas at Lawrence. Della Frank lives and works on the Navajo Nation. Esther G. Belini's poetry also appeared in Neon Powwow; she received her B. Nuclear physicist and educator Fred Begay — has served as a member of the technical staff at the Los Alamos National Laboratory since His research is directed primarily toward the use of laser, electron, and ion beams to demonstrate the application of thermonuclear fusion; this technique will provide future economical and environmentally safe and clean power sources.
Weekly newspaper that contains articles of interest to the American Indian community and the Navajo people. Bailey, Garrick, and Roberta Glenn Bailey. Benedek, Emily. New York : Alfred A. Knopf, Correll, J. Forbes, Jack D. Apache, Navaho, and Spaniard. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, ; with new introduction, Goodman, James M. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, Iverson, Peter.
The Navajos: A Critical Bibliography. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, Navajo History , Vol. Navajo: Walking in Beauty. San Francisco : Chronicle Books, Simonelli, Jeanne M. Thompson, Gerald. The Army and the Navajo. Tucson : University of Arizona Press, Trimble, Stephen. The People: Indians of the American Southwest. Flagstaff, Arizona: Northland Publishing, White, Richard.
Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, Cite this article Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography. July 9, Retrieved July 09, from Encyclopedia. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list. Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.
In sixteenth-century Spanish documents the Navajo are referred to simply as "Apaches," along with all the other Athapaskan-speaking peoples of the New Mexico province.
A child must marry outside his or her clan. Rail sabotage in from the Indian viewpoint for grades K Seal of Georgia. See All Customer Reviews. Since women are held in such high regard, when they exercise their authority against relocation, their children and relatives respond and take action. Sketches of 20 Native Americans from 17 tribes BR The lost children: the boys who were neglected.
The more specific designation "Apaches de Nabaju" appears for the first time in and sporadically thereafter until the end of the seventeenth century. From about on, the people are always called "Navajo" or "Nabajo" in Spanish documents, and the name has been retained throughout the Anglo-American period.
The source of the name is uncertain, but is believed to derive from a Tewa Pueblo Indian word for "cultivated fields," in recognition of the fact that the Navajo were more dependent on agriculture than were other Athapaskan peoples. The spelling "Navaho" is common in English-language literature, but "Navajo" is officially preferred by the Navajo Tribe itself. In their own language, however, the Navajo refer to themselves as "Dine," meaning simply "the people.
In the Southwest, the traditional home of the Navajo has been on the Colorado Plateau — the arid and deeply dissected upland of northwestern New Mexico and northeastern Arizona. The earliest known home of the Navajos was in the area between the Jemez and Lukachukai mountains, in what today is Northwestern New Mexico, but subsequently the people expanded westward and northward into portions of present-day Arizona and Utah.
The Navajo population in was probably somewhere between 16, and 20, By it had increased to about 55,, and in it was estimated at about , The Navajo are the largest Indian tribe in North America today. There are large off-reservation Navajo populations in many cities of the Southwest, but the great majority of Navajo still live on the Navajo Reservation.
Linguistic Affiliation. The Navajo language belongs to the Apachean branch of the Athapaskan family and is particularly close to the languages of the Tonto and Cibecue Apache tribes. Ancestors of the Navajo and Apache peoples are thought to have migrated to the Southwest within the last one thousand years, probably from somewhere in the prairie regions of Western Canada.
They were originally hunters and foragers, but some of the groups, most particularly the Navajo, quickly adopted agriculture, weaving, and other arts from the sedentary Pueblo peoples of the Southwest. The coming of Spanish rule in created a new political and economic order, in which the Pueblos were directly under Spanish rule, whereas the Navajo and Apache were never subjugated but remained intermittently at war with the colonial overlords for the next two and a half centuries. From the newcomers the Navajo soon acquired sheep and goats, which provided them with a new basis of livelihood, and also horses, which greatly increased their ability to raid the settled Communities both of the Pueblo Indians and of the Spanish settlers.
By the end of the seventeenth century, the Navajo as well as the Apache had become widely feared raiders throughout the Southwest. The American annexation of New Mexico in did not immediately alter the pattern of Navajo raiding on the settlements of the Rio Grande Valley, and it was not until a decisive military campaign in , led by Col. Kit Carson , that the Navajo were finally brought under military control, and the Navajo wars came to an end. About half the tribe was held in military captivity at Fort Sumner, in eastern New Mexico, until , when a treaty was signed that allowed the people to return to their original homeland along the Arizona-New Mexico border.
Since that time the tribe has steadily increased both in numbers and in territory, and the original Navajo Reservation has been enlarged to more than four times its original size. The Navajo preference for a scattered and semimobile mode of existence, in marked contrast to the Pueblo Neighbors, is part of the original Athapaskan legacy, as is the Ceremonial complex centering on the treatment of disease.
On the other hand, much of the Navajos' actual mythology and ritual is clearly borrowed from the Pueblos, along with the arts of farming and weaving. From the Mexicans came the dependence on a livestock economy and the making of silver jewelry, which has become one of the most renowned of Navajo crafts. From the early Anglo-American frontier settlers the Navajo borrowed what has become their traditional mode of dress, as well as an increasing dependence on a Market economy in which lambs, wool, and woven blankets are exchanged for manufactured goods.
Unlike other agricultural peoples of the Southwest, the Navajo have never been town dwellers. In the late prehistoric and early historic periods they lived in small encampments clustered within a fairly restricted area in northwestern New Mexico. Later, increasing warfare with the Spanish forced them to adopt a more mobile existence, and bands of Navajo might range over hundreds of miles between the Rio Grande and the Colorado River.
Since their pacification in the s, the Navajo have lived in extended-family encampments, Usually numbering from two to four individual households, that are scattered over the length and breadth of the vast Navajo Reservation. Many extended families maintain two residential encampments a few miles apart.
The summer camps are located close to maize fields and therefore are concentrated to some extent in the more arable parts of the reservation; the winter camps are more scattered and are located primarily for easy access to wood and water. Subsistence and Commercial Activities. The society and economy of the Navajo have been continually evolving in Response to new opportunities and challenges since their first arrival in the Southwest, so that it is difficult to speak of any traditional economy.
During most of the reservation period, from to about , the people depended on a combination of farming, animal husbandry , and the sale of various products to traders. The cultivation of maize was considered by the Navajo to be the most basic and essential of all their economic pursuits, although it made only a relatively small contribution to the Navajo diet. The raising of sheep and goats provided substantial quantities of meat and milk, as well as hides, wool, and lambs that were exchanged for manufactured goods at any of the numerous trading posts scattered throughout the Navajo country.
Beginning in the early s, a few Navajo were employed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and in off-reservation towns and ranches, but wage work did not become a significant feature of the Navajo economy until after World War II. By the s, wage work was contributing about 75 percent of all Navajo income, although the more traditional farming and livestock economies were still being maintained throughout the reservation as well.
Tourism, mineral production, and lumbering are the main sources of cash income on the Navajo Reservation. Industrial Arts. The oldest of surviving Navajo crafts is probably that of pottery making. Only a few women still make pottery, but they continue to produce vessels of a very ancient and distinctive type, unlike the decorated wares of their Pueblo neighbors. The art of weaving was learned early from the Pueblos, but the weaving of wool into heavy and durable rugs in elaborate multicolored patterns is a development of the reservation period and was very much stimulated by the Indian traders.
For a time in the late nineteenth century the sale of rugs became the main source of cash income for the Navajo. While the economic importance of weaving has very much declined in the twentieth century, most older Navajo women and many younger ones still do some weaving. Apart from woven goods, the most celebrated of Navajo craft Products were items of silver and turquoise jewelry, combining Mexican and aboriginal Southwestern traditions. Although many Navajo still possess substantial quantities of jewelry, the silversmith's art itself has nearly died out.
Other craft products that are still made in small quantities are baskets and brightly colored cotton sashes, both of which play a part in Navajo ceremonies. In the prehistoric and early historic periods there was a substantial institutionalized trade between the Navajo and many of the Pueblo villages, and this persists on a small scale today. Since the later nineteenth century, however, most Navajo trade has been funneled through the trading post, which in most respects resembles the old country general store. Here clothing, housewares, bedding, hardware, and most of the other material needs of the Navajo are supplied in exchange for livestock products or, more recently, are sold for cash.
Traditionally, most Navajo families lived on credit for much of the year, paying off their accounts with wool in the spring and with lambs in the fall. Division of Labor. In the traditional Navajo economy there was a rigid though not total division between male and female tasks. Farming and the care of horses were male activities; weaving and most household tasks were female activities. More recently, however, both sexes have collaborated in lambing, shearing, and herding activities, and both men and women are now heavily involved in wage work. Although males played the dominant roles in Navajo ritual activities, there has always been an important place for females as well.
Land Tenure. Families traditionally have exclusive use rights to agricultural land as long as they actually farm it; if it lies uncultivated for more than two years another family may take possession. All range land, however, is treated as Common and collective property of the whole community and is unfenced.
Kin Groups and Descent. Every Navajo belongs to one of sixty-four matrilineal clans, but is also said to be "born for" the clan of his or her father. Strict exogamy is practiced on both sides. Apart from the clans, there are no formally designated units of kinship in Navajo society; people are known by the household or extended family in which they reside rather than by membership in a named kin group. Property, like clan membership, is inherited mainly in the female line.
Kinship Terminology. Kin terms conform to the basic Iroquoian system. Navajo marriages are the result of economic arrangements between kin groups. The great majority of Marriages were always monogamous, but polygyny was permitted until recently, and it is estimated that about 10 percent of Navajo men had two or more wives. By far the most common form of polygyny was sororal. Residence for newly married couples was ideally uxorilocal, but there were many departures from this practice when economic circumstances made another arrangement preferable.
It was also fairly common for couples to move from the wife's to the husband's residence group, or vice versa, at some time after their marriage. Neolocal residence was very unusual in the past, but is becoming increasingly common today, as couples settle close to where there are wage work opportunities. Both marriage and divorce involve very little formality, and the rate of divorce is fairly high. But the great majority of divorces take place between spouses who have been married less than two years. Domestic Unit. The basic domestic unit in Navajo society is the biological or nuclear family.
Its members traditionally live together in a single hogan an earth -covered log dwelling and take their meals together. The basic economic unit is the extended family, a group of biological families who live close together and share productive resources such as a maize field and a flock of sheep and goats in common.
An extended family unit most commonly comprises the household of an older couple, plus the households of one or more of their married daughters, all situated "within shouting distance" of one another. Basic productive resources are the collective property of the extended family and are not alienable by Individuals; they are passed on from generation to generation within the group. Jewelry, saddles, horses, and many kinds of ceremonial knowledge are treated as personal property, However. Individuals have considerable freedom in disposal of these, although it is always expected that a woman will leave most of her personal property to her daughters and that a man will leave much of his property to his sister's children.
Children were and are raised permissively, and there is a marked respect for the personal integrity even of very young children. The main sanctioning punishments are shaming and ridicule. Children receive a good deal of Formal training in various technical and craft activities from their parents, and boys may be schooled in ceremonial lore and ritual practice by their fathers or by their mothers' brothers.
The recitation of myths by grandparents and other elders also contributes to the education of Navajo children. Social Organization. There was no ranking in traditional Navajo society; social obligations were determined entirely by kinship and residence. Both men and women had fairly specific, lifelong obligations toward the family into which they were born as well as toward the family into which they were married. The father in each household was the recognized household head, and the father in the oldest household was the headman of each residence group, with considerable authority over the allocation of labor and resources among all the members of the group.
The status of women was notably high. Political Organization. There was no system of formal authority among the Navajo except that embodied in kinship relationships. In the preservation period, however, the Population was divided into a number of localized bands, and each of these had its recognized leader, although he had no coercive powers. In the reservation period, the organization into bands disappeared, but respected singers medicine men may act informally as local community leaders and as arbitrators of disputes.
Political organization of the tribe as a whole was instituted only in and is modeled on the Institutions of European and American parliamentary democracy rather than on aboriginal tradition. There is a tribal chairman and a vice chairman, elected by reservationwide popular ballot for four-year terms, a Tribal Council made up of elected delegates from each of about one hundred local "chapters," and an Executive Committee elected by the Members of the council.
In most parts of the reservation there are also locally elected chapter officers who attend to the political needs of the local community. Social Control. The principal mechanism for the maintenance of order has always been the concept of collective responsibility, which makes all members of a family, or even of a clan, responsible for the good behavior of any individual member. Maintaining the good name of the family or clan within the community is an important consideration for all Navajo.
In addition, the accusation of witchcraft was likely to be directed against persons who were considered to be "bad characters"; this in effect defined them as public enemies. Conflict between individuals or families might arise for a variety of reasons. Disputes over the possession of farmland and disputes arising from poor marital relations were especially common in earlier times. All infractions Except incest and witchcraft were treated as private wrongs, to be settled by negotiation between the kin groups involved.
Locally respected medicine men might be called upon to arbitrate or advise in these disputes. There is, in addition, a System of Navajo Tribal Courts and a code of offenses adopted by the Navajo Tribal Council, but most Navajo still prefer to settle disputes without recourse to these institutions. Religious Beliefs. Navajo gods and other supernatural powers are many and varied. Most important among them are a group of anthropomorphic deities, and especially Changing Woman or Spider Woman, the consort of the Sun God, and her twin sons, the Monster Slayers.
Other supernatural powers include animal, bird, and reptile spirits, and natural phenomena or wind, weather, light and darkness, celestial bodies, and monsters. There is a special class of deities, the Yei, who can be summoned by masked dancers to be present when major ceremonies are in progress. Most of the Navajo deities can be either beneficial or harmful to the Earth Surface People, depending on their caprice or on how they are approached. Navajo mythology is enormously rich and poetically expressive.
According to basic cosmological belief, all of existence is divided between the Holy People supernaturals and the Earth Surface People. The Holy People passed through a succession of underworlds, each of which was destroyed by a flood, until they arrived in the present world. The Holy People gave to the Earth Surface People all the practical and ritual knowledge necessary for their survival in this world and then moved away to dwell in other realms above the earth. However, they remain keenly interested in the day-to-day doings of the Earth Surface People, and constant attention to ceremonies and taboos is required in order to keep in harmony with them.
The condition of hozoji, or being in harmony with the supernatural powers, is the single most important ideal sought by the Navajo people. Religious Practitioners. The most respected of Navajo Ritual practitioners are called "singers. They are not shamans but priests who have acquired their knowledge and skills through long apprenticeship to an established singer.
They are the most highly respected individuals in traditional Navajo society and frequently act as informal community leaders. Men with a lesser degree of ritual knowledge who can perform only short or incomplete ceremonies are referred to by another term, which might be translated as "curers.
In aboriginal times there were important Navajo ceremonies connected with war, hunting, agriculture, and the treatment of illness. In the reservation period, nearly all of the major public ceremonies have come to focus on curing in the broadest sense — that is, on the restoration of harmony with the supernaturals.
There are, or have been, at least sixty major ceremonies, most of which involve an intricate combination of songs, prayers, magical rituals, the making of prayer-sticks and other paraphernalia, and the making of an elaborate dry-painting using colored sands. Masked dancers also play a part in some ceremonies. Ceremonies may last for two, three, five, or nine nights, depending partly on the Seriousness of the condition being treated. The artistic creativity of the Navajo finds expression in a wide variety of media, including poetry, song, dance, and costume.
The most celebrated of Navajo artistic productions are the brightly colored rugs woven by women, and the intricate dry-painting designs executed by the singers as a part of each major ceremony. Dry-paintings were traditionally destroyed at the conclusion of each ceremony, but permanent reproductions of many of the designs are now being made on boards for sale commercially. In the present century, a number of Navajo have also achieved recognition as painters and have set up commercial studios in various western cities. In traditional Navajo belief, all illness or misfortune arises from transgressions against the supernaturals or from witchcraft.
Consequently, medical practice is essentially synonymous with ceremonial practice. There are particular kinds of ceremonies designed to treat illnesses caused by the patient's transgressions, by accidents, and by different kinds of witchcraft. Apart from ceremonial practices, there was formerly a fairly extensive materia medica of herbs, potions, ointments, and fumigante, and there were specialists who collected and applied these.
Death and Afterlife. Traditionally, Navajo were morbidly afraid of death and the dead and spoke about them as little as possible. The dead were buried promptly and without public ceremony, although a great many ritual taboos were observed by the close kin of the deceased and by those who handled the corpse.
Ideas about the afterlife were not codified in a Systematic way, but varied from individual to individual. There was no concept of rewards and punishments for deeds done in this life; it seems that the afterworld was not thought of as a happy or desirable place for anyone. Kluckhohn, Clyde, and Dorothea Leighton The Navaho. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Leighton, Dorothea, and Clyde Kluckhohn Children of the People. Locke, Raymond F. The Book of the Navajo. Los Angeles : Mankind Publishing Co. Ortiz, Alfonso, ed. Handbook of North American Indians. Washington, D. The Navajo, who in numbered approximately , people, the majority of whom occupy a thirteen-million-acre reservation that spans parts of Arizona , New Mexico , and Utah , understand themselves to be a chosen people living within a sacred geography. A rich oral tradition documents the travails of their ancestors as they traverse a series of three or four underworlds, each of which is portrayed in some state of chaos and disorder resulting in the need for migration upward into the next world.
The oral tradition also documents the preparation of this world and the creation of the Navajo people and establishes tenets for living. The men relieved their longing with mud or the flesh of freshly slain game animals. Eventually the men and women agreed to rejoin and live as one group.
Shortly after the reunion, circumstances necessitated their escaping upward through a great female reed. By some accounts, this world was first conceived in thought, after which its form was projected onto primordial substance through the compulsive power of speech and song. This orderliness was disrupted as a result of the sexual aberrations and excesses of the last underworld.
The women who had masturbated with foreign objects gave birth to twelve misshapen creatures that grew into monsters and preyed on healthy children, pushing Navajo ancestors to the brink of extinction. The Holy People resolved this dilemma by arranging for Changing Woman to be found, grow in a miraculous way, and give birth to warrior sons who slew the monsters. It is she who created the original Navajo matrilineal clans and turned the world over to them.
As with Native Americans across North America , complex changes have occurred in Navajo society since their initial contact with Spaniards, Mexicans, and Americans. At the time of European contact, the Navajo subsisted on hunting and gathering supplemented by some agriculture. Extended family units, generally centered on matrilocal residence and the strength of their clan system, lived in widely dispersed settlements.
Spanish Franciscans first attempted to convert Navajo people when they built a mission along the Rio Grande in ; it was soon abandoned. Subsequent efforts over the next two centuries met with little success. Upon the introduction of livestock into the region, a herding economy based on sheep and goats developed. The Navajo population and their area of settlement gradually expanded as new crops, animals, and technological innovations were added to their subsistence base during the Spanish and American periods.
In the United States defeated Mexico in war and through the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo assumed political jurisdiction over most of what is known as the American Southwest. Members of an American military expedition into Navajo country were impressed by the size of the Navajo sheep and goat herds as well as the well-nourished and healthy condition of tribal members. Westward expansion resulted in frequent clashes between Navajos and outsiders, leading to American military intervention.
At Fort Sumner in New Mexico , the Navajo suffered under difficult living conditions, some of which hastened or exacerbated the spread of disease. In addition unfamiliar foods and alkaline water led to gastric upset and other problems. Since their capture and internment at Hweeldi and the establishment of a reservation on a portion of their homelands in , the Navajo have been in a relationship of constant domination and control by the larger American society.
The colonial assault was repeated at different points in time through repression of the native language and traditions, enforcement of boarding school attendance, impediments to religious freedom, and threats to Navajo land and resources by stock reduction in the s and s, timber harvesting, and coal and uranium mining. These concerns developed alongside a gradual shift to wage-work economics among the Navajo, a recession in the s and s, resource depletion, unsuccessful attempts to preserve sacred sites, Navajo job-preference problems, deaths from improperly regulated uranium mining, radioactive waste spills, continuing poverty for many, and land disputes.
In what is known as the Navajo- Hopi land dispute, Navajo individuals were forced to move off land partitioned by the Navajo-Hopi Land Settlement Act of This political drama stems from President Chester A. Attempts were made to reconcile boundary conflicts between Navajo and Hopi families by legal means on numerous occasions between and , when a federal court ruled that 1. This legislation led to mandatory livestock reductions beginning in and land partition in The latter mandated the relocation of all members of either tribe living in the area granted to the other, slating over 10, Navajos and Hopis for compulsory relocation.
Despite the commitment of enormous amounts of time and money toward resolution by all parties, this dispute remains unresolved. By the last decades of the twentieth century, the Navajo had moved toward political self-determination and cultural renewal. But many Navajo families have been shattered due to complex social and health problems, including economic underdevelopment and chronic unemployment.
Thousands of Navajos are gainfully employed in the fields of health care, education, government service, and commercial farming or resource-extraction industries. Yet reservation unemployment rates far exceed national norms, resulting in the need for many Navajos to work off the reservation in construction or other fields to support their families. Changes in mode of production and diet have had grave consequences on Navajo health. Diabetes mellitus is more prevalent among Navajos than in the general U.
As a consequence, the Navajo have the highest lower-extremity amputation rate in the world. American Indians and Alaskan Natives have a 3. Alcohol abuse contributes to these complex health concerns. It is within this context of rapid cultural change, health crises, and fragmentation that members of the Navajo Nation have searched out new sources of spiritual and curative powers, including those available from biomedical technologies and Christianity , especially fundamentalist forms and the Native American Church. Aberle, David. Michael Cernea and Scott Guggenheim, — Boulder, CO: Westview.
Frisbie, Charlotte. Temporal Change in Navajo Religion: — Journal of the Southwest 34 4 : — Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. Johnson, Broderick, ed. Navajo Stories of the Long Walk Period. Kunitz, Stephen, and Jerrold Levy, with K. Ruben Gabriel et al.