The Canadian Sioux


The Canadian Sioux

Second Edition

James H. Howard
With a new foreword by Raymond J. DeMallie and Douglas R. Parks

Studies in the Anthropology of North American Indians Series

226 pages
24 photographs, 1 map, 3 tables, 3 figures


June 2014


$30.00 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

June 2014


$30.00 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

June 2014


$30.00 Add to Cart

About the Book

The Canadian Sioux are descendants of Santees, Yanktonais, and Tetons from the United States who sought refuge in Canada during the 1860s and 1870s. Living today on eight reserves in Manitoba and Saskatchewan, they are the least studied of all the Sioux groups. This book, originally published in 1984, helps fill that gap in the literature and remains relevant even in the twenty-first century.

Based on Howard’s fieldwork in the 1970s and supplemented by written sources, The Canadian Sioux, Second Edition descriptively reconstructs their traditional culture, many aspects of which are still practiced or remembered by Canadian Sioux although long forgotten by their relatives in the United States. Rich in detail, it presents an abundance of information on topics such as tribal divisions, documented history and traditional history, warfare, economy, social life, philosophy and religion, and ceremonialism. Nearly half the book is devoted to Canadian Sioux religion and describes such ceremonies as the Vision Quest, the Medicine Feast, the Medicine Dance, the Sun Dance, warrior society dances, and the Ghost Dance.

This second edition includes previously unpublished images, many of them photographed by Howard, and some of his original drawings.



Author Bio

James H. Howard (1925–82) was a professor of anthropology at Oklahoma State University. His many publications include The Warrior Who Killed Custer: The Personal Narrative of Chief Joseph White Bull and Shawnee: The Ceremonialism of a Native American Tribe and Its Cultural Background.

Raymond J. DeMallie is Chancellor’s Professor of Anthropology and American Studies, codirector of the American Indian Studies Research Institute, and curator of North American Ethnology at the Mathers Museum of World Cultures at Indiana University.


Douglas R. Parks is a professor of anthropology and codirector of the American Indian Studies Research Institute at Indiana University, and editor of the journal Anthropological Linguistics.


“Howard has written a very good book, which demonstrates that the Canadian Sioux have retained some traditions that their relatives in the United States have abandoned. The Canadian Sioux is recommended reading to students of Sioux traditions.”—Minnesota History Magazine


Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Foreword to the Bison Books Edition
1. Traditional Sioux Culture
2. Tribal Divisions
Traditional Band Names
The Canadian Reserves
3. The Sioux in Canada
4. Traditional History
5. Warfare
6. Economy
Wild Plant Foods
Animal Husbandry
Horticulture and Food Production
Housing and Settlement
Technology and Crafts
Beadwork and Quillwork
7. Social Life
Courtship and Marriage
Kin Groups
Kinship System
Athletic Sports
Gambling Games
Social Dances
8. Philosophy and Religion
Supernatural Beings
Death and Burial
9. Ceremonialism, the Woodlands Heritage
Vision Quest
Prayer Feast and Medicine Feast
Adoption Feast
Medicine Dance
Animal Dreamers
10. Ceremonialism, the Plains Heritage
Sun Dance
Horse Dance
Warrior Society Dances
Grass Dance
Thachó, Warbonnet, and Buffalo Dances
Heyókha Dance
Ghost Dance
Peyote Religion
11. The Canadian Sioux Today
Appendix: List of Informants

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