Nez Perce Women in Transition, 1877-1990
Traditionally Nez Perce Indian women have held important roles within the tribe. The women conducted vital, routine, day-in and day-out domestic chores as well as maintaining a strong influence in tribal community, culture, and tradition. As white encroachment on Nez Perce lands increased and the missionaries increased their influence, the lives of the Nez Perce changed dramatically. This volume is the first look into the lives and contributions of Nez Perce women as they struggled to maintain their families and communities in times of great change. Nez Perce Women in Transition includes unique individual accounts recorded directly from personal interviews with Nez Perce women ranging in age from twenty to ninety. The narratives, in combination with a broad selection of photographs, present some of the major historical, political, and cultural changes that have occurred and provide an opportunity to view Nez Perce women as they made and continue to make dramatic transitions. Over 160 photographs bring past and present Nez Perce culture to both Native and non-Native readers. Dr. James' intent is not to segregate women and men, but to make more complete the record of Nez Perce people. Learning more about the lives of Nez Perce women adds tremendously to our knowledge of indigenous Nez Perce culture. This work contains important material that adds to our understanding of how Nez Perce women survived the challenges of adapting to the realities of acculturation.
274 pp ~ illustrated — ©1996