Photographing Navajos: John Collier Jr. On The Reservation, 1948-1953

Publisher: Harvill Pr
SKU: DADAX082632438X
ISBN : 9780826324382
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Photographing Navajos: John Collier Jr. on the Reservation, 1948-1953

In the early 1950s the great anthropological photographer John Collier Jr. made nearly 1,000 photographs documenting Navajo life in Fruitland, New Mexico, near the Four Corners. Lost until recently in archives far from the Southwest, most of these photos have never before been published. The authors of this book have assembled a selection of Collierïs Navajo photographs showing the changes in post-World War II reservation life.

This was the period when cash-crop agriculture and wage work began to supplant the traditional pastoral life centered on raising sheep and using the wool for weaving. Ironically, the photographer was the son of the Indian commissioner who instigated stock reduction on the Navajo Reservation in 1934. Nearly three-quarters of a century later, the senior Collier is still hated by Navajos, and it is a tribute to the younger Collierïs personality as well as his skill that he was able to take some of the most intimate pictures ever made of the Navajo people. The Collier photos collected here show people working, cooking, weaving, eating, washing their hair, and engaging in other activities of daily life. The collection also includes handsome portraits, some formal, some casual.

The essays by Benally and Doty set Collierïs work in the contexts of Navajo tradition and history as well as provide background on the Fruitland project and Collierïs role in it. Dale Mudgeïs account of Navajo farming practices combines with Collierïs photos to present an outstanding summary of traditional Dinï agriculture.

Specifications of Photographing Navajos: John Collier Jr. on the Reservation, 1948-1953

AuthorC. Stewart Doty, Dale Sperry Mudge, Herbert John Benally
PublisherUniversity of New Mexico Press
Number Of Pages232
Publication Date2002-07-15
Height11 inch.
Length8.5 inch.
Width0.81 inch.
Weight2.45 pounds.

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