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'Earth is not something for you to rip apart'

Webster writer brings Nipmuc perspective to JEL

Larry “Spotted Crow” Mann is set to speak at the Jacob Edwards Library Thursday, Nov. 17. (click for larger version)
November 16, 2011
SOUTHBRIDGE — To Larry "Spotted Crow" Mann, if Native Americans had been able to continue their cultural evolution, they would probably have developed an advanced technology that's more ecologically attuned than what we now have.

"Our culture was not static. It did evolve," he observed, noting the fundamental difference between Native and Western cultures is that Natives believe "Earth is not something just for you to rip apart. It's there for everybody to share and understand."

A Drum Keeper of the Nipmuc tribe, Mann is bringing Nipmuc stories, poems and some of his own tales to Jacob Edwards Library tonight, Nov. 17, in an effort to show that "we are still here, and have always been an intricate part of American history," he said.

For several years, he has been speaking at libraries, schools and colleges and participated in regional powwows as part of the Quabbin Lake Singers, but this time, the Webster resident is focusing on his first book "Tales from the Whispering Basket." Among them are some of his own creation, at least one handed down orally in his family, and pieces of historical fiction based on the life of a Nipmuc leader during King Philip's War.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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