Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Life of the Navajo

Written by: Amanda Bishop and Bobbie Kalman

First line: The people of the Navajo nation call themselves Diné, or “People.”

Why you should read this book: A nice overview for children presents the history of the Navajo nation, beginning with their presumed emigration from Canada about two thousand years ago, and focusing on the period following first contact with the Spaniards from 1700 to 1850, during which time they became skilled ranchers. Cultural traditions, such as the importance of harmony, the sacred aspects of the land, agriculture, and family life, are covered, along with weaving and other artistic accomplishments. The sorrow of forced relocation along with a brief overview of the modern Navajo nation completes the book.

Why you shouldn’t read this book: It lacks any discussion of Navajo legend and mythology.

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