Books

Patricia Etter's Picks

Fragile Patterns: the Archaeology of the Western Papagueria
Some 42 professionals, including anthropologists, archaeologists, ethnobotanists, paleontologists, and more, contributed to this scholarly volume of 700-plus pages. Included is a 63-page bibliography, 281 figures, and 38 statistical tablrs. Missing is an index and a glossary. The Western Papagueria in this case, occupies an area south of Arizona's Gila River to the Gulf of California and west to the Colorado River and inhabited by the O'odham speakers of the area. The scholarly tome is for specialists, researchers, and students. Included are biographies of four who made major contributions to the study and archaeology of the area. In addition, all aspects of human occupation are covered from prehistoric times, such as adaptation to changing environments; material culture; trade and travel; archaeological investigations; and rock art and geoglyphs. The book concludes with a discussion on management of cultural r4sources and past, present, and future cultures of Papagueria.
Fragile Patterns: the Archaeology of the Western Papagueria
Some 42 professionals, including anthropologists, archaeologists, ethnobotanists, paleontologists, and more, contributed to this scholarly volume of 700-plus pages. Included is a 63-page bibliography, 281 figures, and 38 statistical tablrs. Missing is an index and a glossary. The Western Papagueria in this case, occupies an area south of Arizona's Gila River to the Gulf of California and west to the Colorado River and inhabited by the O'odham speakers of the area. The scholarly tome is for specialists, researchers, and students. Included are biographies of four who made major contributions to the study and archaeology of the area. In addition, all aspects of human occupation are covered from prehistoric times, such as adaptation to changing environments; material culture; trade and travel; archaeological investigations; and rock art and geoglyphs. The book concludes with a discussion on management of cultural r4sources and past, present, and future cultures of Papagueria.
Hohokam Millennium, The
What happened to the prehistoric Hohokam? Evidence of a flourising and rich culture is still apparent in the Salt River Valley: hundreds of miles of canals that furnished life-saving water for nourishing lives and farms; remains of platform mounds; ball courts; shell jewellry; and pottery featuring the unforgettable Kokopelli. A number of anthropologists/archaeologists have contributed expert analyses of every aspect of the culture also suggesting that the modern Pimans are their descendants. Added to the understanding of the Hohokam cultural tradition are fine color and black and white photographs accompanied by numerous sketches. In addition to scholars and students, this is one book that a general public will enjoy.
New Stories from the Southwest
Editor Horton, a University of Arizona graduate, has selected some 19 stories, all previously published in journals during 2006. The subjects are as varied as the authors who wrote them and are guaranteed to provide pleasurable reading. Patrick Tobin created an imaginary story about what might have been on the other side of Zzyzx Road near Baker, California. How did the cornfield appear next to the Pow Wow Hotel in West Texas? Dennis Fulgoni was entranced by the fact that a "Deadman's Nail" could be transplanted from a cadaver, while Donald Hurd found some interesting ways for Guadalupe to put a hex on the taxman.
Patterns of Exchange: Navajo Weavers and Traders
The traders, specifically Lorenzo Hubbell of Ganado, had an enormous influence on Navajo weaving by encouraging the women to create new designs that would attract Anglo-American buyers. He also commissioned artists to paint rug designs that Hubbell thought would please buyers, then asked the weavers to copy them (the framed paintings adorn one wall of the Hubbell rug room). the author interviewed a number of weavers for their point of view and it appears that some liked the idea, but always had the final say on the end product, perhaps adding something of her own. The Hubbell family operated some 36 trading posts, mainly in Arizona and New Mexico, thus creating a market for his weavers. Now in the new millenium, we see change over time. Weavers have become enormously creative and produce fine work. They travel to shows and museums and market their own rugs, in many cases, over the Internet. Who would have believed that their market is now global as collectors around the world buy and cherish a Navajo rug. Another topic for consideration is how Hubbell at the same time, was doing much the same thing to promote the Navajo silversmith, whose works have also become collectors' items.
Pottery of Zuni Pueblo, The
Here is an unprecedented study of seven hundred years of Zuni pottery. The highly illustrated volume of over 600 pages contains a brief history of the Zuni people followed by illustrations of designs and shapes.Included are photographs of an incredible variety of designs on paint pots, boxes, freestanding figures and special forms. Zuni potters are featured along with their creations. Vicarious pleasure awaits those who love pottery and can own them all with this book. It is for all those interested in Native art, museum specialists, artists, ceramicists, and archaeologists and anthropologists.
Reflections of Grand Canyon Historians: Ideas, Arguments, and First-Person Accounts
There are hundreds of art books on the Grand Canyon. Now it is time for a book that tells its stories by people who lived them. Thirty-two writers have revived its history which includes new evidence of the disintigration of the Powell expedition. We learn about the Carnegie-Caltech and Nordenskiold expeditions, Native peoples and their relationship to the canyon,mules and trails, John Muir and Gifford Pinchot,women in the canyon, challenges to early medical care, cowboy camps, and running cattle on the North rim. These papers were presented by 34 participants in the Second Grand Canyon History Symposium held at the Canyon in January 2007. Enjoyable reading for all.
Silver and Stone: Profiles of American Indian Jewelers
Forty-eight talented and creative Native artists working with stone, shell, and silver, are profiled between the covers of a beautifully published volume. It must be emphasized that each item produced by these artists is a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. There are no mass-produced pieces of jewellry here. Each has a story to tell about his or her background and how they came to design their works. Bernard Dawahoya, for example, is an Arizona Living Treasure, who tells how he tied coins on train tracks and let the trail "flatten them real good." The creativity of these artists knows no bounds. The book is amply illustrated showing the jewellers at work and their individual pieces of wearable art. A glossary helps understand some of the terms used in the book. A winner, I say!
Wings in the Desert: a Folk Ornithology of the Northern Pimans
Amadeo Rea is an ornithologist and ethnobiologist whose expertise is the study of plants and birds of the northern Pimans. Wings in the Desert, dealing with the birds of the area is a magnificent companion to Rea's At the Desert's Green Edge: An Ethnobotany of the Gila River Pima (1997). His linguistic consultant in both volumes is Culver Casa. As one might expect, this is much more that a book about the birds of the area. First of course, is a sketch of each accompanied by the Pima name with variants, the Tohono O'odham version if different, family and order used by Linnaen scientists, the scientific name (genus and species, English translation, and finally, the Spanish word. Those terms aside, one can sit down and learn the history of each bird and how it fits into the Pima culture. One example is the Yellow-billed Cuckoo. One learns about the history of the bird in the southwest along with an in-depth description of its physical characteristics and its life style. Next of importance is how it fits into the Pima culture including their songs and oral tradition. This one is a real winner all around since it not only has excellent research potential, but one can pick it up at any time, choose a bird at random, then read and enjoy the accommpanying vignette.
With Picks, Shovels & Hope: the CCC and its Legacy on the Colorado Plateau
During the great depression, president Franklin Delano Roosevelt created a Civilian Conservation Corps that put some three million young boys to work and called it "the reclamation of natural resoures and the r3ecdlamation of young American manhood." Between 1933 and 1941, young people from all over the United States lived in various camps scattered over the Colorado Plateau and run by the military. During this time, they arrested soil erosion on twenty million acres, restored 3,980 historic buildings, planted four billion trees and fought forest fires. They built roads and bridges and strung 89,000 miles of telephone line. They developed state parks and built trails in the Grand Canyon. The results of their labors can be seen today in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado. The young men learned new skills, discipline and self assurance, and at the same time helped the country recover its economy since $20 of their $25 salary went directly to their families. The book includes personal histories of many individuals helped by the program.
Zuni Origins: Toward a New Synthesis of Southwestern Archaeology
The Zuni language is spoken only in the pueblo of Zuni and there are no known relatives to this "linguistic isolate." Thus, some 21 scholars have contributed results of research on the question of Zuni origins, and their possible link to the Mogollon culture. They have studied prehistory, archaeological evidence, rock art, settlement systems, economic systems, migration patterns, and more in their efforts. Maps, charts, drawings, and photographs are liberally placed throughout with closed to 60 pages of references. It would have been nice to see a translation of Zuni words that appear in the index, where possible. This huge, scholarly book will be welcomed by professionals in a number of fields including students.

About Patricia Etter

Etter is a member of Arizona State Universityís Emeritus College Council and serves on the Advisory Board for ASUís University Club. She recently completed terms on the Board of Directors of the Oregon-California Trails Association and the Editorial Board of the Western Historical Quarterly. She introduced and edited the journal of William Goulding, published by the Arthur H. Clark Company, titled California Odyssey: An Overland Journey on Southern Trails, 1849. A favorite activity is talking books with the panelists of Southwest Books of the Year.

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