The Plains Cree of Little Pine: Change and Persistence in Culture Contact
O'Brodovich, Lloyd Steven Julius
This study is primarily concerned with the problems posed by the intensive culture contact between Europeans and Plains Cree. Two areas. economy and religion. are intimately related to the acculturation process and these are investigated in order to clarity the forces which operate on the one hand to chance Plains Cree culture and on the other to preserve it. The historical analysis or culture Change among the Cree illustrates their transition from Woodland to Plains culture, and evaluates e results of the forced acculturation in the 19th Century. Field work on a contemporary Reserve (Little Pine) investigated aspect. or traditional religion and tho economic potential in relation to the effects they have had on the maintenance or the reserve-culture or the Plains Cree today. The findings or the study emphasize the need tor cross-cultural understanding between the reserve and the surrounding society and the inadequacy of the economic situation or the Plains Cree. It is seen that although accumulative pressure. (often in the tom of negative sanctions) were applied to Plains Cree culture in order to change traditional patterns, the cor. elements .till persist in religious and economic value which militate against us1milation and help to maintain a distinctively "Indian" culture. This Plains Cree "culture" is seen as a force which prevents the dysfunctional effects of' White contact from achieving their tun affect on the Little Pine people.