When the mighty wind blows through the swamps of southern Louisiana, it changes not only the land, but the inhabitants as well. Just such a wind brought a lone infant into the care of the Chitimacha Indians deep in the Atchafalaya swamp. Raised by the tribal holy man, Storm Rider grows to adolescence as a respected tribal member, steeped in the wisdom and traditions of his adopted people. Their clan competitions, life-cycle rituals, social interactions, and subsistence labors are well explained in this anthropological novel. When captured by an enemy raiding party, Storm Rider and his nemesis, the village bully, forge a bond that delivers them from danger and charts their futures. Love, hate, friendship, and loyalty ride the dark bayou waters and converge at the sacred Rain Tree. Swamps, hurricanes, cannibals, and unforgettable characters are interwoven as tightly as one of old Cane Basket's watertight baskets in this anthropologically accurate story of American Indian cultures in conflict.
Publisher: The University of Alabama Press
Number of pages: 200
Weight: 340 g
Dimensions: 234 x 155 x 13 mm
"Based on a lifetime of anthropological research in the vast, exotic Atchafalaya swampland of southern Louisiana, Gibson spins a story about its ancient Chitimacha Indians. The cultural details are vivid, including a harrowing encounter with cannibals. How does one relate to people who want to have one for dinner, I mean really want to have one for dinner?"--Charles Hudson, author of The Packhorseman
"Spirit Wind is not only an excellent fictional approach to Chitimacha tribal mythology, but a fascinating and extremely well-written book, capturing the essence of Chitimacha storytelling technique in an excellent and thorough manner."--Julian Granberry, author of The AmericasThat Might Have Been: Native American Social Systems through Time