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The Cheyenne Indians, in sharp contrast to other Plains tribes, are renowned for their clearly designed sense of form and structured institution within the cultural pattern of their tribe. It is this trait. together with the colorful background or the Cheyennes. which has attracted the unique collaboration of a legal theorist and an anthropologist who in this volume, provide a definitive picture of the law-ways of a primitive, nonliterate people.
First published in 1941, The Cheyenne Way has been acclaimed universally as a foundational study of primitive law, and is now reiissued to satisfy the requirements of lawyers, students. sociologists. general readers, and collectors of western epic and Indian saga.
The Cheyenne Indians were the westernmost branch of the Algonkian language group, and had their origins in the woodlands of the upper Xlississippi Valley, but they are familiar in American history for their more recent habitat along the high plains east of the Rocky Mountains. Divided after 1833 into the Northern and Southern Cheyennes, they ranged from Montana to Oklahoma and were known and feared by travelers on both the Santa Fe and Oregon trails.
This volume presents the folkways in law of the Cheyennes through the technique of the American case lawyer, adjusted to the requirements of the anthropologist with his scientific understanding of human behavior and realistic sociology. Of primary interest, perhaps. to the general reader, are the law cases' themselves Based upon individual episodes which reflect the legal procedure of the Cheyennes for a period of more than sixty years. There are heroic narratives in the best tradition of the sagas of primitive peoples everywhere.
Volume 21 in The Civilization of the American Indian Series.