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Kiowa, Apache, and Comanche Military Societies: Enduring Veterans, 1800 to the Present

by Meadows, William C.

  • ISBN: 9780292752122
  • ISBN10: 0292752121

Kiowa, Apache, and Comanche Military Societies: Enduring Veterans, 1800 to the Present

by Meadows, William C.

  • List Price: $65.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press
  • Publish date: 02/01/2006
  • ISBN: 9780292752122
  • ISBN10: 0292752121
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Description: For many Plains Indians, being a warrior and veteran has long been the traditional pathway to male honor and status. Men and boys formed military societies to celebrate victories in war; to perform community service, such as policing the buffalo hunt; and to prepare young men for their role as warriors and hunters. By preserving cultural forms contained in song, dance, ritual, language, kinship, economics, naming ceremonies, and other semireligious ceremonies, these societies have played an important role in maintaining Plains Indian culture from the prereservation era until today.

In this book, William C. Meadows presents an in-depth ethnohistorical survey of Kiowa, Apache, and Comanche military societies, drawn from extensive interviews with tribal elders and military society members, unpublished archival sources, and linguistic data. He examines their structure, functions, rituals, and martial symbols, showing how they fit within larger tribal organizations. And he explores how military societies, like powwows, have become a distinct public format for cultural and ethnic continuity.

With its almost two-hundred-year span, this book offers a more complete picture of the nature and role of Plains Indian military societies, past and present, than any previous work. It will be important reading for everyone interested in American Indian studies and especially for those involved in today's Indian revitalization movement.

William C. Meadows received his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Oklahoma in 1995 and was an assistant professor at Colorado State University from 1995 to 1997. During fieldwork for this book, he was inducted into the Comanche Little Ponies Gourd DanceSociety and was given the Kiowa name Cauihejeqi (Kiowa Historian) by Kiowa Black Legs Society leader Gus Palmer Sr. He lives in Bedford, Indiana.

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