Arapaho Journeys: Photographs and Stories from the Wind River Reservation

May 15th, 2012 | By | Category: 23-4: Investing in Education, Empowering Tribal Communities, Media Reviews

ARAPAHO JOURNEYSBy Sara Wiles
University of Oklahoma Press (2011)

Review by Bob Gutierrez

Having met Sara Wiles many years ago, I was excited to run across her new book, Arapaho Journeys. Whenever I saw her at events on the Wind River Indian Reservation, she always seemed at home. Her photographs in the book reflect this closeness and understanding of the Arapaho people. Many of the elders pictured are now gone, and her photos conjure up memories of visits I shared with them. Wiles captures the humor, acceptance, pleasantness, and wisdom of the elders; she also shows how the younger people learn by participating in ceremonies and community activities.

The text in Arapaho Journeys is also like a visit with old friends. When I read her interview with Marie Willow on the marriage of Clarence and Edna Moss, it was as if Marie were talking with me.

Arapaho Journeys offers an exciting view of the Wind River Indian Reservation, insight into the individuals portrayed in the book, and understanding of the Arapaho people and their way of life. It is an opportunity not found in the many books that have been written about this great nation. The book is a valuable addition to any library, and I look forward to her next book.

Bob Gutierrez worked at St. Stephen’s and Arapaho schools on the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming from 1980 to 1996 and is still a frequent visitor there.

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