Classic Views of American Life: Pulitzer-Prize-Winning Fiction

N. Scott Momaday, 1934-

House Made of Dawn


  • Born in Lawton Oklahoma during the Great Depression; his father an artist and educator, his mother, an educator.
  • A member of the Kiowa tribe, grew up on various southwestern reservations where his parents worked.
  • Educated at University of New Mexico (B.A.) and Stanford University (M.A., Ph.D.). Worked as a graduate student under the guidance of poet and critic Yvor Winters.
  • Married, with three daughters.


  • House Made of Dawn (1968) his first novel.
  • Taught English and Comparative Literature at Stanford University and University of California at Berkeley. Currently teaches at University of Arizona. Also, Visiting Professor of American Studies at University of Regensberg, Germany.
  • Also an artist and book illustrator (The Gourd Dancer and Flight of the Seventh Moon).
  • Has received many awards, including "Outstanding Indian of the Year" (1969), the Western Heritage "Wrangler" Award (1974), the Distinguished Service Award of the Association of Western Literature (1983), and membership in the Oklahoma Fall of Fame (1987).
  • Served on numerous Pulitzer Prize juries, chaired the 1986 panel.

Major Writings

House Made of Dawn (1968), novel
The Way to Rainy Mountain (1969), autobiography
Angle of Geese and Other Poems (1974)
The Gourd Dancer (1976), poems
The Names (1976), autobiography
The Ancient Child (1989), novel
In the Presence of the Sun (1993), short stories and poems

Critical Sources and Reviews

  • Contemporary Authors, New Revision Series, Vol. 34; Contemporary Literary Criticism, Vol. 85.  Gale Publications.
  • New York Times Book Review, June 9, 1968 ("Anglos and Indians" by Marshall Sprague) and Times Literary Supplement, May 22, 1969 ("Exhibition").


House Made of Dawn Reading Group Guide with Questions
Native American Authors Site
Native American Authors -- Teacher Resources
"Keeper of the Flame"  N. Scott Momaday
"Late Twentieth Century - N. Scott Momaday" -- a PAL Research and Reference Guide
House Made of Dawn by N. Scott Momaday
"Buffalo Trust: Sharing the Dream" --an interview in Native Peoples Magazine
Scott Momaday -- Mandarin Tribal Voice

Retired Discussion Series

Debbie Sturman, Director
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