Synopses & Reviews
"A set of probing and fascinating essays by leading scholars, Alta California
illuminates the lives of missionaries and Indians in colonial California. With unprecedented depth and precision, the essays explore the interplay of race and culture among the diverse peoples adapting to the radical transformations of a borderland uneasily shared by natives and colonizers."and#151;Alan Taylor, author of The Divided Ground: Indians, Settlers, and the Northern Borderland of the American Revolution
"In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries the missions of California and the communities that sprang up around them constituted a unique laboratory where ethnic, imperial, and national identities were molded and transformed. A group of distinguished scholars examine these identities through a variety of sources ranging from mission records and mitochondrial DNA to the historical memory of California's early history."and#151;Andrand#233;s Resand#233;ndez, author of Changing National Identities at the Frontier: Texas and New Mexico, 1800-1850
and#8220;[A] fascinating array of essays. . . . Of clear interest.and#8221;
“[A] fascinating array of essays. . . . Of clear interest.” Quincy D. Newell
“Recommended.” Western Historical Qtly
Spanish Californiaand#151;with its diverse mix of Indians, soldiers, settlers, and missionariesand#151;provides a fascinating site for the investigation of individual and collective identity in colonial America. Through innovative methodologies and extensive archival research, the nine essays in this volume reshape our understanding of how people in the northernmost Spanish Borderlands viewed themselves and remade their worlds. Essays examine Franciscan identity and missionary tactics in Alta California, Sonora, and the Sierra Gorda; Spanish and Mexican settlersand#8217; identity as revealed in mission records, family relationships, political affiliations, and genetic origins; and Indian identity as shown in mission orchestras and choral guilds as well as in the life of Pablo Tac, a Luiseand#241;o who penned his own remembrance of the Spanish conquest of Alta California. The concluding essays examine the identity and historiography of the field of the Spanish Borderlands as it has developed over the last century in North America and Spain.
Through innovative methodologies and extensive archival research, the nine essays in this volume reshape our understanding of how people in the northernmost Spanish Borderlands viewed themselves and remade their worlds. Essays/authors include:
- What they brought: the Alta California Franciscans before 1769 / Rose Marie Beebe, Robert M. Senkewicz
- Franciscan Missionaries in late colonial Sonora: five decades of change and conflict / Jos Refugio de la Torre Curiel
- Raise your sword and I will eat you: Luiseno Scholar Pablo Tac, ca. 1841 / Lisbeth Haas
- Identity through music: choristers at missions San Jose and San Juan Bautista / James A. Sandos
- Becoming Californio: jokes, broadsides, and a slap in the face / Louise Publos
- Genetics and the Castas of colonial California / John R. Johnson, Joseph G. Lorenz
- Fantasy heritage: California's historical identities and the professional empire of Herbert E. Bolton / Albert L. Hurtado
- A new borderlands historiography: constructing and negotiating the boundaries of identity / David J. Weber
- Identities and the usable pasts of colonial borderlands: Spanish historians and the North Pacific frontiers of the Spanish empire / Sylvia L. Hilton.
This book is part of the Western Histories series, published for the USC-Huntington Institute on California and the West by University of California Press and Huntington Library Press.