Characteristics of Native American Literature

Characteristics of Native American Literature

Native American Literature Pre-1492 to 1650

Historical Context N.A.s have been in America 30 times longer than Europeans. N. A.s befriended the first Europeans and instructed them in agriculture and woodcraft.

If not for the help of N.A.s, the Europeans may not have survived the cold winters. Recorded in pictographs, or symbols conveying ideas.

No fixed versions exist because of the oral tradition. Stories change over time with each speaker. Language is poetic and moving.

Interaction with nature is portrayed. Related to tribal knowledge, customs, and rituals.

Trickster stories illustrate culturally appropriate behavior and explain the origins of some feature of the natural world.

What happened next? The arrival of the white settlers resulted in almost the complete destruction of N. A. societies. N. A.s were forced to learn the white mans ways of survival.

N. A.s were in danger of losing their identity, language, and traditions. Some N. A.s and whites are credited for keeping the heritage alive.

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