UNC Press assistant editor Zach Read is headed to California this week to attend the annual meeting of the American Society for Ethnohistory. What is ethnohistory? Our friends at First Peoples, New Directions in Indigenous Studies have pulled a helpful excerpt from the brand new book by Rose Stremlau, Sustaining the Cherokee People: Kinship and the Allotment of an Indigenous Nation. Stremlau begins:
Ethnohistory is a disciplinary hybrid, a fusion of historical and anthropological approaches enabling scholars to study American Indian history despite gaps in the documentary record and misrepresentations of indigenous people in written information authored by non-Indians. Instead of giving preference to such written documents, ethnohistorians evaluate them by cross-checking them against additional sources of evidence that provide other interpretations by and of Native people, including oral tradition, ethnography, and archaeology.
Visit First Peoples, New Directions to read the rest of Stremlau’s explanation.
If you missed Stremlau’s commentary on our site last month, be sure to go read her guest post, “History’s Definition of the American Family.”