Tales of the Earth

Native North American Creation Mythology

David Leeming

Tales of the Earth

David Leeming

Distributed for Reaktion Books

180 pages | 47 color plates, 13 halftones | 6 1/4 x 8 1/4
Cloth $25.00 ISBN: 9781789144994 Will Publish September 2021 For sale in North and South America only
A revealing analysis of key themes in Native American origin myths—and their stark contrast with the exceptionalist values of the United States.
 
Tales of the Earth is a comprehensive yet concise overview of Native American mythologies. After outlining theories of the origins of Native North Americans, David Leeming considers the creation myths of many tribes, emphasizing four commonly occurring figures: the Great Spirit, the trickster, the goddess, and the hero. Leeming suggests that in addition to these figures, Native American mythologies have in common a deep reverence for the earth and for community responsibility as opposed to individualism—tenets that stand in stark contrast to the concepts of exceptionalism and Manifest Destiny that characterize the United States, a nation that was built on ancient tribal land.
Review Quotes
Ken Lokensgard, Assistant Director of the Center for Native American Research and Collaboration, Washington State University
"In Tales of the Earth, Leeming discusses how key characters common to the creation narratives of Indigenous North Americans, created the living, sacred landscapes to which Native American remain tied today. Importantly, he highlights how these narratives and the relationships to land they make possible often differ from Nonnative understandings of creation and the human place within it. Leeming does all this in an engaging, accessible style."
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