The Man Made of Words by N. Scott Momaday
Essays, Stories, Passages

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Synopsis

A collection of thirty-two essays, stories, and passages from a Pulitzer Prize-winning author chronicles how he became the first recognized Native American voice of the twentieth century and explores such themes as land, language, and identity.
 

About N. Scott Momaday

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A member of the Kiowa tribe, Momaday was born in Oklahoma but grew up on reservations in the Southwest. He was educated at the University of New Mexico and Stanford University, and later taught at Berkeley, Stanford, and the University of Arizona. Momaday lives two lives as a professor of English and Comparative Literature and as a Kiowa tribal dancer and recorder of the Native American experience in this country. "None but an Indian, I think," he has said, "knows so much what it is like to have existence in two worlds and security in neither." This is a theme that runs through his fiction and nonfiction, including his Pulitzer prize winning first novel, House Made of Dawn (1968). Yet, as a Native American and a writer, Momaday finds two sources of identity the land and the language. The former gives strength to the American Indian, whose sense of identification comes from a closeness to the land. The latter connects humankind to ourselves and our world. "Man's idea of himself" finds "old and essential being in language," Momaday has written. Acts of naming, of remembering these are "legendary as well as historical, personal as well as cultural.
 
Published May 1, 1997 by St Martins Pr. 211 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Biographies & Memoirs, Science Fiction & Fantasy. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Momaday has been nursing an interest in the Kid for years now, and several of these pieces turn to considering the unfortunate outlaw, a young man of mythicized history who is, Momaday concludes, ``finally unknowable.'' Momaday is no tree-hugger, but he presses the case for a mature ecological et...

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Publishers Weekly

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With every publication since 1969, when he won the Pulitzer Prize for his first novel, House Made of Dawn, Momaday has proven that he is a preeminent voice in Native American literature. In this maste

Apr 28 1997 | Read Full Review of The Man Made of Words: Essays...

The New York Times

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then he writes that ''it is in the nature of language that it proceeds to the formulation of meaning.'' It is a measure of Mr. Momaday's integrity and skill that he not only reconciles these two opinions about language but employs them to draw us into his love of the subject and to illuminate wha...

Jun 15 1997 | Read Full Review of The Man Made of Words: Essays...

Publishers Weekly

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He describes in the first part of this collection the differences between European written tradition and the oral tradition of Native Americans, this tradition being the basis for Native American literature.

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