Based primarily on the oral accounts of John Blackned, Cree Narrative offers a detailed account of traditional Cree society. The result is an integrated picture of Cree thought, feelings, and beliefs relating to living on and with the land. For this expanded reissue of his pioneering work in cognitive anthropology, Richard Preston has added four new chapters. He contextualizes his original research and provides historical and social context for the Waskaganish area during the time of his fieldwork in the 1960s. He also includes a biography of John Blackned and a new selection of Blackned's stories that vividly portray Cree experience at the end of the fur trade period in the early nineteen hundreds. To step into the sensibility of another culture and portray it wisely and with love is a rare accomplishment. Richard Preston achieved this in the original edition of Cree Narrative, published in a limited fashion by Canada's National Museum of Man in 1975, and continues it here.
"Preston was very much ahead of his time and his work represents one of the main thrusts of cultural anthropology as it is now taught and researched. His approach weaves a comprehensive, integrated overview of Cree thought - there is no one else the researcher can consult for this perspective. Even for the Crees, Preston's work is a repository of lost knowledge as he conducted his study on the eve of the their making significant changes to their society by signing the James Bay Agreement in 1975." Toby Morantz, Anthropology, McGill University ----- "An extremely important book." American Anthropologist