But what does the polka-dot scarf symbolize?

Title: I am Hutterite
Author: Mary-Ann Kirkby
Genre: Autobiography, religious
Source: Sent to me by Thomas Nelson, in exchange for an honest review and participation in the Book Sneeze review program.


I love reading about people's journeys through faith and their religions. Maybe it is because my path hasn't always been obvious? Or maybe I'm looking for some recognition that I'm not the only one who doesn't have it all figured out? Whatever the reason, I'm a sucker for well told personal religion stories.

This novel introduced me to a world/religion I didn't even know existed. The Hutterites appear to be very close in beliefs and lifestyle to the Mennonites and / or the Amish. Don't get me wrong, they probably have a much different value set, but those were the closest I have experience with, that I could compare to.

Ms. Kirkby uses her family talent of story telling to give us a family history, touch on some of the religious/lifestyle details she deemed interesting as a child, and to bring us along as she begins to realize who she is and what being Hutterite meant to her.  The story is well told and interesting. However, it offers only a surface introduction to the religion and way of life. In only a few instances are we, readers who are probably not Hutterite, given full explanations to why something occurs. Often we are told this is just how it is.


Overall: As a personal journey and introduction to the Hutterite faith this novel succeeds. If you are looking for a more indepth study of the religion I'd look elsewhere. This is a personal story that captures the way of life and emotional outcomes rather than giving a how and why.


Personal Note: I really do want to know why they chose the polka-dotted head scarf. Ms. Kirkby explains the significance of wearing one....she explains the why's of apron wearing....but she doesn't touch on the why for the pattern. Plus, I can't seem to find it referrenced anywhere....just that they do wear them. Odd.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

You might find these sites on Hutterites very informative: http://www.flickr.com/groups/642452@N21/
http://hutterites.org/
http://blogs.allhutterites.com/lightofevenstar/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hutterite

The purpose of the kerchief wearing for the Hutterites is based on the 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 passage in the bible.
I was told the reason they wore this particular pattern is because back in the day this was the only material they could find to buy in bulk.
Now-a-days the patterns vary among the different sects of Hutterites.
The Schmiedleut most often wear plain black kerchiefs. The Lehrleut who have strictly mantained the dress code passed down from earlier generations still wear these big polka dot shawls. The Dariusleut wear a mix. It really doesn't matter what kind of pattern is worn as long as the head is covered. It's all up to the woman's personal preference as long as it's black.
C.

Mandy said...

Thanks! I'll check out those sites....and thank you for the further info about the head scarves.

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