More than twenty years after its publication in 1991, Leslie Marmon Silko's monumental novel Almanac of the Dead continues to disconcert, move, provoke, and outrage readers. In a work that
is overtly and often uncomfortably political, Silko's overflowing cast of characters includes representatives from a range of cultures and communities who are united by common experiences of
dispossession, disenfranchisement, exploitation, and poverty. Clearly, Silko's depiction of a social uprising that draws together the indigenous People's Army of the Americas and the American Army of
the Homeless triggered—and was designed to trigger—a range of reactions among readers and critics alike.
There has not been a previous collection on this incredibly significant text.
—Lisa Tatonetti, co-editor of Sovereign Erotics: A Collection of Two-Spirit Literature
Silko's ambitious but meandering novel undertakes an epic narrative, heavy with intrigue and carnage, about an apocalyptic Native American insurrection.
A chillingly dark vision of corruption, despair, and chaos in the Americas, where a Native new world order appears ready to begin.
This collection develops, rather than rehashes, key themes in Almanac criticism, and makes it an essential addition to studies of Silko and contemporary Native American writing.
Howling for Justice actively engages with both the literary achievements and
the politics of Silko's text. It brings together essays by international scholars reacting to the novel while keeping in mind its larger concern with issues of social justice, both local and
transnational. Aiming both to refocus critical attention and open the book to a broader array of readers, this collection offers fresh perspectives on its transnational vision, on its sociocultural,
historical, and political ambitions, and on its continued relevance in the twenty-first century. The essays examine and explain some of the key points that readers and critics have identified as
confusing, problematic, and divisive. Together, they offer new ways to approach and appreciate the text.
The book concludes with a new, never-before-published interview in which Silko
reflects on the twenty years since the novel's publication and relates the concerns of Almanac to her current work.