"Some by flatteries and others by threatenings": Political strategies among Native Americans of seventeenth-century southern New England
This dissertation examines political processes within Native American societies of seventeenth-century southern New England, focusing on the strategies used by individuals and groups to legitimize or challenge political authority within Native society. Documentary, archaeological, and oral history data are integrated in order to investigate the significance of and variation in different political strategies involving ideology, alliance, marriage, coercion, settlement, exchange, and the manipulation of material culture. I compare the political strategies employed by the leadership of three historically known polities (the Mohegans, Pequots, and Narragansetts). Two of these experienced a violently contested change in leadership personnel, while in the third leadership was more stable. These differences in internal political struggles, particularly in the legitimizing of authority, provide a context for understanding variation in political strategies.
0326: Cultural anthropology