TIQ SLO'W: The Making of a Modern Day Chief

by: Dr. Mary Louise Contini Gordon

TIQ SLO'WTIQ SLO'W is the ethnographic biography of a Native American Indian Chief, Charlie Cooke, a man who by many counts could not exist. But here Charlie Cooke is: a cowboy, a ranch hand, a rodeo champ, a Korean War veteran, a regular husband and father, and a truck driver. This is a story of ironies, of a man whose ancestral lands were taken and, in some cases, ravaged, of a man whose culture was almost obliterated. It is the story of this very same man who worked tirelessly to preserve these ancestral lands for posterity, for Cooke's descendants and those of the very people who took lands from his forbearers.

TIQ SLO'W, the name by which many know Charlie Cooke, tells of leadership among other Native Americans, anthropologists, civic leaders, State Parks, and National Parks. The leadership and historic perspectives intertwine. Charlie Cooke's style was one of influence. With no positions of note or actual authority in many of the situations in which he found himself, Cooke was and is highly effective and much admired. Although this Indian Chief was influenced by his Chumash roots, his leadership style spanned more than just the Chumash.

The story takes place along the mountainous Southern California coastline and the serene Channel Islands not too far off the coast. Today this area glitters with the wealthy, the movie stars, the tanned beach crowd, and the daring surfers slapping the world-renowned Malibu waves. They, too, enter the story.

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