A Red Woman Was Crying

by Don Mitchell

Don Mitchell’s new collection of short stories, set among tribal people on Bougainville Island in the late 1960s, demystifies ethnography by turning it on itshead.

  • Paperback
  • Pages: 266 pages
  • Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5
  • Published July 11th 2013 by Saddle Road Press
  • ISBN: 0983307245 (ISBN13: 9780983307242)

Don Mitchell’s new collection of short stories, set among tribal people on Bougainville Island in the late 1960s, demystifies ethnography by turning it on its head. The narrators are Nagovisi – South Pacific rainforest cultivators – and through their eyes the reader comes to know the young American anthropologist, himself struggling with his identity as a Vietnam-era American, who’s come to to study their culture in a time of change. Beautifully written, evocative, and utterly original, A Red Woman was Crying takes the reader into the rich and complex internal lives of Nagovisi — young and old, male and female, gentle and fierce — as they grapple with predatory miners, indifferent colonial masters, missionaries, their own changing culture, their sometimes violent past, and the “other” who has come to live with them.