The National Museum of the American Indian is one of the worlds great conservators of cultural heritage, and its collections hold more than 800,000 objects spanning 13,000 years of history of the Native peoples of the Western Hemisphere, from Tierra del Fuego in the south to the Arctic in the north. Drawing on new insights from archaeology, history, and art history, Infinity of Nations uses culturally, historically, and aesthetically significant objects as a point of entry to understanding the people who created them.
Following an introduction on the power of objects to engage our imagination, each chapter presents an overview of a region of the Americas and its cultural complexities, written by a noted specialist on that region. Community knowledge-keepers and an impressive new generation of Native scholars contribute highlights on objects that represent important ideas or that capture moments of social change. Together these writers create an extraordinary mosaic. What emerges is a portrait of a complex and dynamic world shaped from its earliest history by contact and exchange among peoples.
Illustrated with more than 200 strikingly beautiful photographs published here for the first time, Infinity of Nations opens new avenues that extend well beyond those of conventional cultural studies. Authoritative and accessible, here is an important resource for anyone interested in learning about Native cultures of the Americas.