Working the Navajo Way: Labor and Culture in the Twentieth Century
Colleen O'NeillISBN: 0700613951;
Book DescriptionThe Dine have been a pastoral people for as long as they can remember; but when livestock reductions in the New Deal era forced many into the labor market, some scholars felt that Navajo culture would inevitably decline. Although they lost a great deal with the waning of their sheep-centered economy, Colleen O'Neill argues that Navajo culture persisted. O'Neill's book challenges the conventional notion that the intro-duction of market capitalism necessarily leads to the destruction of native cultural values. She shows instead that contact with new markets provided the Navajos with ways to diversify their household-based survival strategies. Navajos actually participated in the "reworking of modernity" in their region, weaving an alternate, culturally specific history of capitalist development. O'Neill chronicles a history of Navajo labor that illuminates how cultural practices and values influenced what it meant to work for wages or to produce...
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