To render the God of the water propitious: Hunting and human-animal relations in the Northeast Woodlands

Date of Completion

January 1999


American Studies|Anthropology, Archaeology|Anthropology, Cultural|Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies




Through a holistic and regional approach this dissertation presents a comprehensive account of hunting and human-animal relations among historic Northeast Woodland peoples. Major issues that are addressed include animals as key components of Woodland Indian lifecycles and everyday life; the technical and spiritual aspects of game animal hunting and processing; and the retention of Native hunting-related behavior in the face of the cultural changes brought about by European colonization. Also discussed is the similarity of hunting behaviors and belief systems among Native groups across the Northeast. It is proposed that the shared hunting-related techniques, beliefs and material culture associated with Native American cultures in the region comprise a Northeast Woodlands Hunting Complex. ^