Lists and Bibliographies

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List of American Indian Books Suggested by the Electronic Mailing List NativeLit-L August 1995. List is maintained by Mike Wilson, professor of Native American Studies at University of Wisconsin.

Question: If you had only 10 books you could use to teach (college Native American Studies), what would they be? Books recommended by more than one person (number in parentheses indicate the number of recommendations).

  • Erdoes and Ortiz, eds. American Indian Myths and Legends (translated/transcribed oral tales) (2); Reviewed under: YA category
  • Erdrich, Louise. Love Medicine (fiction) (5)
  • Harper's Anthology of Twentieth Century Native American Poetry, ed. Duane Niatum (2)
  • Momaday, N. Scott. House Made of Dawn (fiction) (5), Reviewed under ADULT
  • Momaday, N. Scott. The Way to Rainy Mountain (autobiography) (3)
  • Silko, Leslie Marmon, Ceremony (fiction) (3), Reviewed under ADULT
  • Silko, Leslie. Storyteller (fiction/poetry) (4), Reviewed under ADULT
  • Welch, James. Fools Crow (fiction) (3)

Other Books Recommended:


  • Alexie, Sherman. The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven, reviewed under YA category
  • Broker, Ignatia. Night Flying Woman (juvenile), reviewed under YA
  • Bruchac, Joe. Dawn Land, Reviewed under YA category
  • Dorris, Michael. Morning Girl (juvenile)
  • Dorris, Michel. Yellow Raft in Blue Water , Reviewed under YA category
  • Erdrich, Louise. Tracks
  • Henry, Gordon. The Light People
  • King, Thomas. Green Grass, Running Water
  • King, Thomas. Medicine River
  • McNickle, D'Arcy. The Surrounded, Reviewed under ADULT
  • Mourning Dove. Cogewea
  • Ortiz, Simon. Fightin': New and Collected Short Stories
  • Tapahonso, Luci. Saanii Dahataal, The Women are Singing, reviewed under ADULT category
  • Vizenor, Gerald. Bearheart
  • Vizenor, Gerald. Dead Voices
  • Vizenor, Griever: An American Monkey King in China
  • Welch, James. Winter in the Blood, Reviewed under ADULT Category
  • Young Bear, Ray. Black Eagle Child


  • An Anthology of Canadian Native Literature, ed. Moses and Goldie Callaloo, Vol. 17 (poetry/prose/ including literature by high school students)
  • Native American Literature: A Brief Introduction and Anthology, ed. Gerald Vizenor
  • Returning the Gift: Poetry and Prose from the First North American Native Writer's Festival, ed. Joe Bruchac
  • Talking Leaves, ed. Craig Leslie (short fiction)
  • The Remembered Earth (essays/fiction/poetry), ed. Geary Hobson

The Oral Tradition

  • Bullchild, Percy. The Sun Came Down
  • Bruchac, Joe. The Faithful Hunter: Abenaki Stories
  • Smith, Theresa. Thunderers and Water Monsters
  • Swann, Brian. Coming to Light
  • Wallis, Velma. Two Old Women Reviewed under YA section
  • Walters, Anna Lee, Peggy Beck, Nia Francisco. The Sacred, (NA studies textbook pubolished in 1977, reissued) Reviewed in ADULT section


  • Apess, (sic, Apes), William. The Complete Writings of William Apess; Apes wrote one autobiography, "A Native of the Forest, Comprising a Notice of the Pequot Tribes of Indians, in 1829
  • Black Elk Speaks: Being the Life Story of a Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux as told through John G. Neihardt, Reviewed in ADULT Section
  • Black Hawk. Black Hawk : An Autobiography, ed. Donald Jackson. Published in 1833, this is still trenchant (and funny)
  • Translations of Washington Mathews


  • Bruchac, Joseph (ed). Survival This Way: Interviews with American Indian Poets
  • Cotelli, Laura. Winged Words

Critical Works

  • Ruoff, A. Lavonne Brown. American Indian Literatures: An Introduction and Bibliography
  • Owens, Louis. Other Destinies: Understanding the American Indian Novel, Reviewed in ADULT section
  • Vizenor, Gerald. Narrative Chance, Reviewed in ADULT Section
  • Sarris, Greg. Keeping Slug Woman Alive
  • Warrior, Robert. Tribal Secrets
  • Krupat, Arnold. New Voices in Native American Criticism

Bibliographies on Native Americans and the Environment There are several fairly extensive, including one huge one that may take quit a whiel to download. Bibliographies are described by focus: Water and Dams, Native perspectives generally, Fishing. These lists are part of a larger web site, Native Rights and Environment with many links to sites that have some kind of focus on Native environmental issues (and some sites that haave no Native inputs, are ecological). Intellectual property and genetic engineering are concerns at this site. Concerns of indigenous peoples are not limited to those of North America.

Native vids: rental source, summary of contents--Here's a "videography" the classroom teacher will find useful. There are summaries of the contents of these vids, info about where to rent them, phone numbers, and rental prices. Unlike the pretentious academic bibliographies, they're quite useful to the classroom teacher.

Lisa Mitten's Home Page--A native research librarian at the University of Pittsburg, Lisa supervises acquisition of books on Indians (among other duties). On a Native books page accessible from her homepage, she lists all relevant acquisitions of the library since 1993. Her lists give author, publisher, publication date, but do not review the books or give prices. Elsewhere, here, you'll see quite a few reviews of children's books by Lisa (and Naomi Caldwell-Wood). These were prepared for an article on Indian classroom for teachers distributed by the American Indian Library Association. From Lisa's page, you can access the AILA page (though this is just officers and business)

  • CATALOGUE OF PUBLICATIONS - From the SASKATCHEWAN INDIAN CULTURAL CENTRE. Mostly Cree and Metis publications, published by the Centre, at the University of Saskatchwan.

  • Bibliography of Indian Art, books, periodicals, museum catalogs, compiled by the Wallace Library of the Rochester Institute

  • Books (very brief reviws) on Native plants and foods; also non-native health and nutrition for Middle and h.s. science, from Native Plant and Herb Knowledge section here..

  • Recommended instead of Pocahontas -- List of books recommended by members of the NAT-CHAT email list as activities for children instead of taking them to see the Disney cartoon.

    The 2 bibliographic lists that follow here are largely useless unless you are getting a grad degree and want to crib obscure sources to to fake your own bibliography and pseudo-footnotes. They might have some use as guides to library research except that many entries are long out of print, inaccessible. Useful for Indian college students to mine for phoney footnotes to impress ignorant TA's with on their research papers.

    • Bibliography by Prof Margolies--180K gopher typescript, long dowload. This is supposed to help university faculty who want to "integrate NA material into their courses". It's an un-anotated bibliography--just a list of publications--many obscure, out of print, and not likely found in any library's holdings anywhere, just copied off from footnotes the way students do who are trying to impress you on a research paper. Similar remarks apply to the vids, no source where they can be rented, etc. Looks to me like this thing was compiled around 1984, no new books. An example of worthless -- probably grant-supported -- imitation scholarship by the non-Indian professoriate. Zillions of phoney footnotes for your hastily-done shallow papers, though.

    • Bibliography of Supposed NA, Spirituality--Compiled by Mark Ruml of the Center for the Study of Religion at the University of Ottawa, 1992. This is almost as bad as the preceding list (but somewhat shorter). You could work the cites into your PhD thesis--if you didn't mind the fact that about half of it is the kind of anthro academic jargon about Native religion that virtually all traditional people find error-laden and offensive. If your thesis is going to attack that, though, this is a great source for targets--if you can find them.

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