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People of the Rainbow: A Nomadic Utopia

People of the Rainbow: A Nomadic Utopia Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Synopsis:

Since 1972, the Rainbow Family of Living Light, a loosely organized and anarchistic nomadic community, have been holding large gatherings in remote forests to pray for world peace and create a model of a functioning utopian society. In People of the Rainbow, Michael I. Niman offers the first comprehensive study of this  countercultural group, also known as the Rainbow Nation or Rainbow Family. Niman's insightful and compelling profile describes the origins and recent history of the Rainbows and explains the eclectic philosophy of environmentalism, feminism, peace activism, group sharing, libertarianism, and consensus government they espouse.

A fictional re-creation of a day in the life of a Rainbow character named Sunflower begins the book, illustrating events that might typically occur at an annual North American Rainbow Gathering. Using interviews with Rainbows, content analysis of media reports, participant observation, and scrutiny of government documents relating to the group, Niman presents a complex picture of the Family and its relationship to mainstream culture—called "Babylon" by the Rainbows. Niman also looks at internal contradictions within the Family and examines members' problematic relationship with Native Americans, whose culture and spiritual beliefs they have appropriated.

The nomadic nature of the Rainbow Family has long exasperated the U.S. government--especially the Forest Service--and has baffled the media. Niman places the Rainbow Family's gatherings in a historical context by framing the group's activities in terms of the long tradition of intentional communities and utopian experimentation within the United States. Concluding with reflections on the successes and limitations of the Rainbow movement, People of the Rainbow provides an extensive ethnography of this intriguing subculture and provides fresh insights into the ongoing legacy of utopian communalism.

The Author - Michael I. Niman is an adjunct assistant professor of American studies at the State University of New York at Buffalo and a lecturer in the communication department at Buffalo State College.

About the Author

The Author - Michael I. Niman is an adjunct assistant professor of American studies at the State University of New York at Buffalo and a lecturer in the communication department at Buffalo State College.

Table of Contents

Sunflower's day : July 3 — Roots, rock, rainbow — "The way we make decisions is more important than the decisions we make" : the Rainbow Family Council — The nuts and bolts of making a rainbow : rainbow infrastructure — People of the rainbow — Violence and peace — Fakelore — The mediated rainbow : the American media look at the rainbow family — Leave only smiles : land stewardship and community relations — The rainbow and the U.S. government — Conclusion : endless summer.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780870499890
Subtitle:
Nomadic Utopia
Author:
Niman, Michael I.
Publisher:
Univ Tennessee Press
Location:
Knoxville :
Subject:
History
Subject:
Anthropology - Cultural
Subject:
Sociology, anthropology and archaeology
Subject:
Social history
Subject:
Utopias
Subject:
Nonviolence
Subject:
Social history -- 1970-
Subject:
Nonviolence -- History -- 20th century.
Subject:
anthropology;cultural anthropology
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Edition Description:
1
Series Volume:
GTR-284
Publication Date:
19971022
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
9.06x6.12x.92 in. 1.16 lbs.

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Politics » Utopia
History and Social Science » Sociology » General

People of the Rainbow: A Nomadic Utopia
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 304 pages University of Tennessee Press - English 9780870499890 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Since 1972, the Rainbow Family of Living Light, a loosely organized and anarchistic nomadic community, have been holding large gatherings in remote forests to pray for world peace and create a model of a functioning utopian society. In People of the Rainbow, Michael I. Niman offers the first comprehensive study of this  countercultural group, also known as the Rainbow Nation or Rainbow Family. Niman's insightful and compelling profile describes the origins and recent history of the Rainbows and explains the eclectic philosophy of environmentalism, feminism, peace activism, group sharing, libertarianism, and consensus government they espouse.

A fictional re-creation of a day in the life of a Rainbow character named Sunflower begins the book, illustrating events that might typically occur at an annual North American Rainbow Gathering. Using interviews with Rainbows, content analysis of media reports, participant observation, and scrutiny of government documents relating to the group, Niman presents a complex picture of the Family and its relationship to mainstream culture—called "Babylon" by the Rainbows. Niman also looks at internal contradictions within the Family and examines members' problematic relationship with Native Americans, whose culture and spiritual beliefs they have appropriated.

The nomadic nature of the Rainbow Family has long exasperated the U.S. government--especially the Forest Service--and has baffled the media. Niman places the Rainbow Family's gatherings in a historical context by framing the group's activities in terms of the long tradition of intentional communities and utopian experimentation within the United States. Concluding with reflections on the successes and limitations of the Rainbow movement, People of the Rainbow provides an extensive ethnography of this intriguing subculture and provides fresh insights into the ongoing legacy of utopian communalism.

The Author - Michael I. Niman is an adjunct assistant professor of American studies at the State University of New York at Buffalo and a lecturer in the communication department at Buffalo State College.

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