The Inland Whale

by Theodora Kroeber

Book review

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Amazing book. So glad Rosemary shared it with me.
1959. Forward by Oliver La Farge.
What a perceptive and culturally sensitive person Kroeber is! The stories were easy to read, even though some of the behavior and thinking seemed foreign [as one would expect]. I can hardly imagine better retellings of the stories than Kroeber has created, and she succeeded admirably in her goals as she stated them:

"The plots and persons are the stories' own, but in my retelling the focus of interest changes....We are less interested in the routes they traversed and in the exploits of their heroes than were the Indians, and more interested in the character and personality of the hero or his wife or an old uncle....My objective has been to transmit in some measure the sense of poetry and drama which these tales held for their own people....The alien reader must be given enough background fact so that motivation and behavior are understood."

I hope to read her book of Ishi's story, and see the films as well.

Kroeber's [second] husband was theanthropologist Alfred Kroeber [1876 –1960], and some versions of the stories she retells were 'collected' by him.

Kroeber (1897–1979) studied anthropology and met and married Alfred Louis Kroeber, one of the leading American anthropologists of his generation and himself a widower. After his death, Theodora Kroeber wrote his biography. They had two children, writer Ursula K. Le Guin and English professor Karl Kroeber.

Two movies were made based on her account of Ishi:
Ishi: The Last of His Tribe (1978) and
The Last of His Tribe (1992).
[[Alfred Kroeber provided detailed information about Ishi, the last surviving member of the Yana people, whom he studied over a period of years.]]

The Inland Whale. 1959. Indiana University Press, Bloomington.
Ishi in Two Worlds. Berkley Books.
Ishi: The Last of His Tribe. 1964. Parnassus Press, Berkeley, California.
(with Robert F. Heizer) Almost Ancestors: The First Californians. 1968. Sierra Club Books, San Francisco.
Alfred Kroeber: A Personal Configuration. 1970. University of California Press, Berkeley.

PublisherUniversity of California Press
Release date 01.09.1963
Pages count205
File size4.9 Mb
eBook formatPaperback, (torrent)En
Book rating4.03 (34 votes)

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