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Lame Deer, Seeker Of Visions: The Life Of A Sioux Medicine Man [Paperback]

John (fire) Lame deer
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 15 1973
Lame Deer
Storyteller, rebel, medicine man, Lame Deer was born almost a century ago on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. A full-blooded Sioux, he was many things in the white man's world -- rodeo clown, painter, prisioner. But, above all, he was a holy man of the Lakota tribe.
Seeker of Vision
The story he tells is one of harsh youth and reckless manhood, shotgun marriage and divorce, history and folklore as rich today as ever -- and of his fierce struggle to keep pride alive, though living as a stranger in his own ancestral land.
--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Review

Rober Brunett author of The Tortured Americans A masterpiece.

Alvin M. Josephy, Jr., author of Indian Heritage of America A wonderful book...destined to become a classic.

Alvin M. Josephy, Jr., author of Indian Heritage of America Lame Deer is a magnificent American....He has demolished so much misinformation and so many stereotypes about Indians and their values and ways of life that we should be ashamed of how little we have actually known of all that he has to tell us. As an individual and as a representative of his people, he is someone whom all readers should get to know -- not just those who are interested in Indians, but every American. The book is destined to become a classic. It will be read, and reread, and quoted from through the years. Personally, I am enormously enriched by it. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable Account of a Man's Life May 11 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Lame Deer was many things in his life. He was an outlaw, lawman, rodeo clown, and Indian medicine man. At a later point in his life Lame Deer came to meet an artist living in NY named Richard Erdoes. The men decided to collaborate together to write a book about the life of Lame Deer. Lame Deer himself was a Sioux medicine man trained in the ways of the old ones. This book is gripping and humorous. The first part recounts many funny personal stories about Lame Deer's life and his run-ins with the law, his personal feelings about the present state of the US, and his own thoughts about what it means to be an Indian. The latter part of the book focuses on ceremonies like the sundance, sweatlodge gatherings and also discussion about the sacred pipe. Lame Deer explains how important symbolism is to the Indian and also explains a good deal of Indian mythology in the latter part of the book which helps the average reader get inside the minds of these people and their beliefs. Throughout this book the reader will come to develop an emotional affinity with Lame Deer. You find yourself feeling how he does about pollution, broken promises, and disregard for sacred beliefs. It's very compelling. Sadly, we are also told much about how Indians faired badly at the hands of white guns, diseases and white "instant gratification" attitudes. I don't think the book was perfect because Erdoes was not an actual writer at the time although he did a decent job putting the book in literary form. I suppose he should at least be lauded for helping us to interpret Indian mysteries. My only major gripe about this book was that it wasn't longer.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Frank, Funny, and Irreverent look at life. Nov. 28 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
You will find yourself laughing out loud at the antics in this book numerous times. I almost fell out of my chair when the book detailed Lame Deer's crime spree of moonshine whiskey and stolen cars. ;-) This one story alone os worth twice the price of the book!
There is much wisdom in this book; but the ceremonies in this book are not entirely accurate.
Many American Indian Nations witheld accurate information, but now more and more of them are coming forward and releasing accurate information. Even some of the Hopi Elders came forward about two years ago and released some of their sacred prophecies. I hope it is not too late.
I am deeply disturbed by the Kettle dance, but I am not of that culture, and have no right to judge it.
I would like to give this book five stars but I can't because some of the ceremonies are wrong.
I say the ceremonies are wrong because I have read ceremonies in many other books, and I have several full blooded American Indian friends, and they confirmed what I read in these other sources.
I recommend these books regarding American Indian Spirituality in the order listed.
"The Sacred Pipe" Joseph Epes Brown
"Native Wisdom" Ed McGaa
"Mother Earth Spirituality" Ed McGaa
"Foolscrow: Wisdom And Power" Thomas E. Mails
"Black Elk: The Sacred ways of the Lakota" Wallace Black Elk & William S. Lyons.
I recommend "The Sacred Pipe" highest because Mr. Brown actualy lived with the famous holyman Nick Black Elk for a few months while gathering information for this book.
Then; there are some books written by Indians that are full of new age pap because it sells.
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5.0 out of 5 stars love it Feb. 20 2014
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
great for aboriginal studies and understanding this book is a "nut shell" of aboriginal thinking and ceremonies, really nice!!! mm
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A powerful and funny book.... Oct. 3 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
People here are prasing this book for the insight it gives into the lives of Native Americans. Not that this book isn't important for its take on Amerindian culture: to say that John Lame Deer doesn't have a grasp on what is important to himself and his people would be improper and negligent.
People are missing two of the things that make this book so powerful: its humor and its take on the white world that exists outside of the reservation. Erdoes commentaries on his Indian visitors, Lame Deer's comments on EVERYTHING, and the voice and process of this book are FUNNY. This book is well-constructed and fun to read. On to the second point: Lame Deer is fairly sucessful in making Europeans often look like clowns-- stripping their culture and sophistication, making them more human....
This book should have a much wider audience than it has ever had (and that is actually fairly substantial, strangely enough....) Not that this is a book that could change a person's life: it could at least give direction to the perplexed. I highly recommend this book....
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5.0 out of 5 stars powerful Aug. 11 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Without a lot of unnecessary rhetoric it will have a powerful effect on you, if you only read the introduction.
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