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Diné Bahane': The Navajo Creation Story
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Diné Bahane': The Navajo Creation Story

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  207 ratings  ·  12 reviews
This is the most complete version of the Navajo creation story to appear in English since Washington Matthews' Navajo Legends of 1847. Zolbrod's new translation renders the power and delicacy of the oral storytelling performance on the page through a poetic idiom appropriate to the Navajo oral tradition.

Zolbrod's book offers the general reader a vivid introduction to
Paperback, 448 pages
Published December 1st 1987 by University of New Mexico Press (first published December 1984)
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Jul 27, 2011 added it
The dilapidated copy I read came as a discard from the high school library in Kirtland. Mom says it's one of the books that tends to walk out and not come back, which surprised me at first. However, I loved it. As far as authenticity goes, it's a little strange- written by an English prof from PA with no training in ethnology or anthropology, no experience with the Navajo culture, no knowledge of the language, and plenty of enthusiasm. His primary source is another book by another author from ...more
Luke Jones
Feb 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This should be required reading. Powerful, majestic, and surprisingly humorous, this is more or less a transcription/dictation of the original American oral masterpiece.
Sonja Dewing
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: navajo
This book actually took me a little while to get through. I picked it up from my university's library for a final 15 page paper that I need to write for my Indians of the Southwest Anthropology course.

This text is very interesting and it pays lots of attention to poetic detail, such as repetition of certain elements and repetition of events in a particular pattern. I don't know much about the Navajo, but based on the studies I've done regarding Mescalero Apache and the Hopi, it also includes
Nov 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
On the one hand, the setting of this story was very familiar: the cast of animals and the geographical features are clearly those of my home country. On the other hand, the stories themselves, and the cultural norms and other elements, were foreign to me. It was a very interesting read.
Zachary Roanhorse
Dec 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
My husband and I decided to read this aloud together after we got a copy this Christmas. It is an essential read. I would give it five stars but some of the editing mistakes were inexcusable. A sacred work such as this deserves better attention to detail.
Jun 24, 2008 rated it it was ok
Super easy reading. Skimmed a lot of the replication. It's suppose to be writen like a song, a traditional chant, I think, but it could be the same story but better without the extra 100 pages and more folklore detail.
Aug 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: haveread
I would like to learn even more about traditional Navajo ways of understanding the world. This was an interesting starting point.
Brea Plum
APL only has the ebook.
Oct 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
This will be the last book in my Navaho study
Sep 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
Pretty great once you've made allowances for some translation-related weirdness and the editor's unnecessary (and troubling) embellishments.
Sheldon Fatt
Nov 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Must read for all Navajos.
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