Blackfoot Social Life

After we go live.

Social Life of the Blackfoot Indians

In this third paper on the ethnology of the Blackfoot Indians, Clark Wissler examines the social culture of the Blackfoot Indians, particularly the Piegan division in Montana. Complete with pictures where appropriate this paper approaches the social life of Blackfoot Indians in a fair and unpretentious manner. Discussions concern marriage, child rearing, naming, games and amusements, government of tribe, picture writing, and other activities specific to the social organization of the Blackfoot Indians. While Clark relied heavily on the first hand knowledge of a Piegan Indian, he supplemented that information with known facts from a variety of sources.

Blackfoot Names

Each individual has a name. The name is single in that there is neither family nor band name; though some persons, especially men, possess several names, these are co-ordinate and never used jointly. The right to name the child rests with the father; though he rarely confers it in person unless a man of great …

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Blackfoot Gambling

Playing for stakes was always a favorite and the games to be described here were rarely played except in gambling. Gambling is often spoken of as fighting, or war, and in turn war is spoken of as gambling. This is reflected in a myth where the players’ scalps were at stake. The Hand-Game Piaks kaiosin, …

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Blackfoot Etiquette

To discuss this subject in detail would be a matter of considerable inter-est and doubtless of definite comparative value; but it is our intention to note only such points as came readily to notice. Naturally, many points mentioned under previous heads may be considered as bearing upon this topic. On approaching the tipi of a …

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Blackfoot Divorce

The chief grounds for divorce from the man’s point of view, are laziness and adultery. For these or any other causes he may turn his wife out of doors. The woman then returns to her relatives where she is cared for and protected until another marriage can be arranged. The husband usually demands a return …

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Blackfoot Courtship

It seems proper to begin the discussion of our subject with those conventions directly associated with sexual activities. Among the Blackfoot, as everywhere, the male is usually the aggressor. He lies in wait outside the tipi at night or along the paths to the water and wood-gathering places to force his attentions. This phase of …

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