The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952 Page: 148
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Laura Thompson's Culture in Crisis, upon the other hand, is
a completely impersonal study-not one Hopi is mentioned by
name nor is the subject of a single photograph identified. This
aloofness is inherent in the nature of the inquiry which reports
the results of a severely controlled scientific investigation that
utilized the skills of over fifty experts working in a dozen disci-
plines. Anthropology, psychology, linguistics, human ecology,
and somatology have each been employed in an attempt to ana-
lyze the crisis in Hopi culture according to "the method of five-
dimensional structural analysis." All of which hopes to devise a
method of procedure that will preserve the "genuine" culture
of the Hopi, now in danger of losing their balance as individuals
and their entity as a cultural group, from the impact of accul-
turation. The reader who feels himself lost in the maze of scien-
tific data and postulates will agree with the first sentence of John
Collier's introduction, "I suspect no book yet produced is like
this book." But if the same reader will continue through the
remainder of the foreword, he will quite likely find a key to the
understanding of Hopi society in crisis.
Culture in Crisis is written in a highly technical style that
possesses the rhetorical grace of an algebraic formula. Indeed,
one wonders for whom it was written: if it was designed for the
specialist in Indian administration, it might have been issued in
the much maligned mimeographed directive; if it falls into the
hands of the so-called average reader, there will be some mystified
and resentful reactions, not perhaps against the content but the
mode of presentation.
O'Kane, on the other hand, has not used "an integrative multi-
dimensional approach" but has written about Poli Payestewa,
Grace Chapella, and Ralph Hotewa, his friends. He portrays
them as human beings who live within a compact, traditional
culture that is self-sufficient and content. The culture has its
standards of honesty and beauty; it lives constantly in a world
of the spirit which no white man (rendered "whiteman" by
Miss Thompson) has fathomed; it is old and it is good. O'Kane,
a shrewd observer, recognizes the impact of an alien civilization
upon the Hopi life-way but feels the Hopi will remain a Hopi
for a long time yet. And, it should be said here, Miss Thompson
Here’s what’s next.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952, periodical, 1952; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101139/m1/172/: accessed May 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.