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444Southwestern Historical QuarterlyApril missions, Lozano believes that documentation ofthe musical skills ofthe friars and Indians indicates that such manuscripts may have been produced as part ofthe rich liturgical music of die missions. The final six chapters cover instruments with European origins, from church bells and percussion instruments, to woodwinds, organs, and animal bells. Some, such as the chirimía, a double-reed aerophone, were brought by die Muslim conquerors to Spain in the Middle Ages, then used in processions and liturgical music. The instruments in this section were widely used throughout Hispanic New Mexico, and Lozano locates them in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century documents. The text is well illustrated, with drawings and paintings from the Renaissance and colonial New Mexico paired with modern photographs. For readers interested in the music of Spanish Texas, this section will provide valuable information. Overall, the volume is a rich collection ofmaterial related to Hispanic folk traditions in New Mexico, and lay persons, musicians, and performers will appreciate the background it provides. Lozano hints at the wider implications and importance ofthe traditions he documents, and historians and anthropologists will likely build upon his work to further investigate the functions of diese traditions within New Mexican communities. University ofArkansas at Little RockKristin Dutcher Mann Native American Life-History Narratives: Cobnial and Postcolonial Navajo Ethnography. By Susan Berry Brill de Ramírez. (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2007. Pp. 288. Notes, works cited, index. ISBN 978-0-8263-3897-6. $34-95. cloth.) One has to wade through a lot of postmodern jargon and speculation to get to the basic thesis of this book: that a reader needs to take a critical stance when reading an "as told to" autobiography of an indigenous person, especially when the story is filtered through a translator, as in the case of die Son of Old Man Hat (1938), the text Brill de Ramírez attempts to deconstruct. While that thesis is well supported by many critics of ethnographers, one needs to be as equally critical of Brill de Ramirez's specific claims about how "ethnographers erred by misreading conversively complex stories as discursively factual narratives" (p. 74). Brill de Ramirez's extensive use ofjargon, including "ratiocinative," "paralinguistic ," "discursive facticity," "conversive symbolism," and "hetteroglossic text," gets in the way of anything useful in this book. Many of her interpretations and "corrective readings" are highly speculative and there are numerous questionable contentions. For instance, she writes of the power of the ethnographer to misinterpret and distort Navajo culture, but then notes how the Son ofOld Man Hat may have been an accomplished liar taking the ethnographer for a tall tale ride. One glaring error in the book is the mixing up ofthe non-Native andiropologist William Morgan with linguist RobertYoung's longtime Navajo collaboratorWilliam Morgan. The two are treated in the text and index as one person. Young recalled in an interview in the Winter 1 gg6 issue oftheJournal ofNavajo Education how he met "Willie" Morgan in 1 936 when he went to work as a laborer at the Sheepbreeding 2oo8Book Reviews445 Laboratory near Fort Wingate where Morgan worked examining wool fibers. Willie taught Young die Navajo language in the evenings and this partnership became a lifelong collaboration, which included working on the small book The Trouble at RoundRock that Brill de Ramírez speculates about. The other William Morgan wrote die 1931 American Anthropologist article "Navaho Treatment of Sickness: Diagnosticians ," about which the author also conjectures. The author's claims, such as that Navajo control of research "insures the reliability and accuracy of current work," while politically correct are somewhat optimistic (p. 62). Brill de Ramírez supports uncritically Taiaiake Alfred's assertion that "with very few exceptions, universities are sites of production of imperial values and ethics," which makes one wonder where rightwing critics such as David Horowitz get all their ammunition to accuse universities of being bastions of uncritical liberalism (p. 211). The central message of this book is that the "ethnographic record presents far greater degrees of complexity and obfuscation than has even been realized to date. Well over a century of textualized stories produced via ethnographic scholarship lies in need ofconversive clarity" (p. 21 1). However...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1558-9560
Print ISSN
0038-478X
Pages
pp. 444-445
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-06
Open Access
No
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