Cover

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Title Page, Copyright

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CONTENTS

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ILLUSTRATIONS

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p. ix

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PREFACE

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pp. xi-xvi

This volume is a quarter century overdue. And it may well be a quarter century premature, though I believe there are reasons that make this the right time to present Theodore Rios’s life story in book form. Telling a Good One is an experiment that makes no claim to solve the complex problems of presenting a collaborative...

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

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pp. xvii-xix

For Theodore Rios telling ‘‘a good one’’ was easy. As he says at the end of a videotaped interview in 1975, ‘‘I could go on talking all day.’’ For me, telling ‘‘a good one’’ about the collaboration between Ted and I has not been easy. The process of the transformation from oral interviews to this book could not have...

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INTRODUCTION

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pp. 1-26

Ted did not begin telling his life story as it appears above.5 This excerpt from Ted’s narration is edited. Though the material comes from the first taped interview we did, the format has been changed.6 Questions have been removed, some sentences reordered, and deletions of repetitions have been made. This version...

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1. THEORIES OF INSCRIBING COLLABORATIVE PERSONAL NARRATIVE

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pp. 27-50

The cross-cultural encounter between a Tohono O’odham man and an Anglo woman for the purpose of producing a publishable life story exposes a complex set of circumstances and expectations.1 It begs for a paradigm or methodology for presentation that elucidates fully the narrator’s and the collector’s roles in...

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2. COLLABORATIVE LIFE STORY AS LITERARY EXPRESSION

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pp. 51-78

Telling a Good One, even though it was originally conceived as an ‘‘as-told-to’’ autobiography, transgresses most conventions of autobiography as a literary genre. By every standard, the project was ethnographic in its methodology and results. Does that make the edited text of our interviews a literary failure? As...

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3. NATIVE AMERICAN COLLABORATIVE PERSONAL NARRATIVE

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pp. 79-110

There are no models for Telling a Good One. Even among the over six hundred published texts usually termed Native American autobiographies (Brumble 1988: 10), there are, to my knowledge, no presentations of Native American life story that concentrate on addressing personal narrative as a process rather...

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4. PAPAGO PERSONAL NARRATIVES

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pp. 111-145

Ted Rios is not unique as a Papago narrator of life story. Three Papago personal narratives already exist in published form, one written and the other two orally narrated by members of the Tohono O’odham tribe. The best known of these is Papago Woman, narrated by Maria Chona and collected and edited...

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5. MORE THAN ONE WAY TO TELL "A GOOD ONE"

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pp. 147-179

When Ted and I met in that hospital room in Sells in 1974, I knew more about his life from the interviews he had done with anthropologist Timothy Dunnigan than I would learn directly from him in our interviews. The transcripts of the Rios-Dunnigan tapes (1969) contain narration of many facts, events, and experiences...

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6. PERSONAL-NARRATIVE PERFORMANCE, STORYTELLING, AND AUDIENCE

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pp. 181-208

Telling ‘‘a good one’’ sums up two of the most important qualities of Ted’s narration of his life story—his sense of what constitutes a good story, and his sense of how his narrative reflects on him as its teller. The former has to do with Ted’s concern with plotting and embellishing episodes and stories to create...

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7. LIFE-STORY STRUCTURE AND CONTEXT

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pp. 209-240

Ted Rios’s life story, as it has been presented in this volume, is episodic, incomplete, and frequently repetitious. The topics and types of narratives presented thus far attempt to replicate the process of Ted’s oral narration to me.1 During our interviews Ted sometimes narrated related episodes, but as often as...

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8. THE POETICS AND POLITICS OF COLLABORATIVE PERSONAL NARRATIVE

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pp. 241-260

Every field project has an afterlife. Telling a Good One has had an exceptionally long prepublication afterlife, some of which has been alluded to in the preceding chapters.1 But if Native American collaborative personal narrative is to be taken seriously as a process, not simply a vehicle for ‘‘amplifying ethnographic...

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EPILOGUE

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pp. 261-265

The final installment in the afterlife of the Rios-Sands project is one last episode of failure. As usual,my failure. In February of 1998, I went to Tucson for a week to make a number of short trips to places and institutions, which I anticipated could offer information that would answer some nagging questions...

APPENDIX: Editing Interview Transcripts into Narrative

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pp. 267-306

NOTES

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pp. 307-342

BIBLIOGRAPHY

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pp. 343-355

INDEX

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pp. 357-365

Image Plates

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