Extending the Rafters

Interdisciplinary Approaches to Iroquoian Studies

Edited by Michael K. Foster, Jack Campisi, and Marianne Mithun

Subjects: Indigenous Studies
Paperback : 9780873957816, 438 pages, June 1984
Hardcover : 9780873957809, 438 pages, June 1984

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To the Iroquois, "extending the rafters" meant adding onto the longhouse, both in the literal sense of making room for new families and in the figurative sense of adding adopted individuals or tribes to the League of Five Nations. Similarly, this book extends Iroquois studies. The distinguished contributors represent such diverse areas of anthropology as ethnology, ethnohistory, and archaeology. They address issues that cut across disciplinary lines, making this book a significant, state-of-the-art survey. The topics explored revolve around the influence, contributions, field work, and teachings of anthropologist William N. Fenton, a founder of the discipline of ethnohistory. The essays run the gamut from prehistory to contemporary political issues, from individuals to women and nations, and from language to ritual.

Michael K. Foster is Iroquoian Ethnologist Emeritus at the Canadian Ethnology Service, National Museum of Man, Ottawa, and the author of From the Earth to Beyond the Sky: An Ethnographic Approach to Four Longhouse Iroquois Speech Events. Jack Campisi is Museum Consultant at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center and the author of The Mashpee Indians: Tribe on Trial. Marianne Mithun is Professor of Linguistics at the University of California, Santa Barbara and the author of The Languages of Native North America.