An impressive feature of this book is its solid grounding in turn-of-the-century anthropological reports by George Dorsey, George Bird Grinnell, Alfred L. Kroeber and their successor Robert H. Lowie....This work can serve as a reference on Plains Indian symbolism, or a presentation of alternative views of reality from which contemporaries, and not only Native American ones, have much to learn.
This is a sympathetic evocation of the myths, cosmologies, sacred rituals and symbolic forms of major Native American tribes formerly inhabiting the Great Plains in the mid-nineteenth centuryCheyenne, Arapaho, Crow, and Blackfeet.
The author describes in rich detail the process by which power is transferred from spirits to individuals, the role of self-torture in vision-seeking, and how the visions received by some were significant to all.
Anthropology and Humanism Quarterly
A good introduction to Indian belief for a sociology of religion class and will acquaint ethnohistorians with a kind of symbolic research that may complement ethnohistorical reconstructions of Plains belief systems.