Monday, January 04, 2010

HUM 221: First Thanksgiving, Hohokam, etc. / D R A F T

We will also read some traditional Cherokee stories on how things came to be the way they are

The Beginning/Legend of the Strawberries

and compare them to another origin myth -- the "First Thanksgiving" story we all learned as children. Read an overview in The Christian Science Monitor at, (b) the primary historical sources at, (c) a newspaper story on at what Alaska Natives eat along with their turkey at

and (d) an essay by folklorist Esaúl Sánchez at suggesting one thing the myth does for us.

Interviewed on young adult author Tina Nichols Coury's blog Tales from Mount Rushmore, Alexie had this take on Thanksgiving ...
[Q.] What is your favorite dessert and why?

[A.] I'm not supposed to have sugar, but when I do I always go for pumpkin pie. It tastes great and I love the year-round irony of an Indian celebrating Thanksgiving.

* * *

Hohokam who left villages, irrigation canals and the name of the Chicago Cubs' spring training ballpark in what is now Phoenix at (3) a recreation of a Hohokam village of the 1500s at (4) a description of the Tohono O'odham, or Desert People (formerly Pima and Papago), who apparently are culturally related to the Hohokam and may be their descendants, at

find links in outtakes on HUM 221 syllabus

Case study: Religious diversity. On the Web, we will read: (1) an overall introduction to traditional and Christian spirituality; (2) a bio of Commanche leader Quanah Parker and the Native American Church he helped found; and (3) material on Christian gospel singing, including an account of how "Amazing Grace" and other hymns were translated into Cherokee in the 19th century; a translation of "Amazing Grace" into the Cherokee language and syllabary (alphabet); an MP3 file of "Amazing Grace" and other gospel songs from a CD cut by the Cherokee Nation of Tallequah, Okla., and a story about a Cherokee gospel singing near Tallequah and an article on how hymn singing helps the Cherokee people, among others, to preserve their language and teach it to their youth. For a glimpse of traditional Cherokee belief and practice, we will read the explanations of the Cherokee belief system, festivals and dances (including the Stomp Dance), medicines and healers on the Cherokee Nation's website. Surf the website of the United Keetoowah Band, a federally recognized band of of traditional Cherokee.

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