Momaday, N. Scott (1934—)

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Momaday, N. Scott (1934—)

N. Scott Momaday, winner of the 1969 Pulitzer Prize for fiction with his first novel, House Made of Dawn, achieved international attention as an author of Native American literature. Through his poetry, fiction, criticism, and essays, especially The Way to Rainy Mountain (1969), the story of the Kiowa people whose dominance on the American plains ended with the Euro-American expansion, Momaday introduced Native American culture into the canon of American literature. Among his other well known works are "The Bear," for which he won the Academy of American Poets prize in 1962, and his second novel, The Ancient Child (1989), a fictionalized autobiography about an Indian artist in search of his racial identity. As Momaday's popularity increased during the last three decades of the twentieth century, so did interest in Native American cultural heritage, economic needs, and legal claims.

—Sharon Brown

Further Reading:

Schubnell, Matthias. N. Scott Momaday: The Cultural and Literary Background. Norman, University of Oklahoma Press, 1986.