“From the upper bunk where I write, a narrow window allows me a southern exposure of the desert beyond this prison. Saguaro cacti, residents here long before this rude concrete pueblo, fill the upper part of my frame. If I could open the window and reach out across the razed ground, sand traps, and shining perimeter fence, I might touch their fluted sides, their glaucous and waxen skins.”
For some people, even prison cannot shut out the natural world.
A teacher and family man incarcerated in Arizona State Prison—the result of a transgression that would cost him a dozen years of his life—Ken Lamberton can see beyond his desert walls. In essays that focus on the natural history of the region and on his own personal experiences with desert places, the author of the Burroughs Medal-winning book Wilderness and Razor Wire takes readers along as he revisits the Southwest he knew when he was free, and as he makes an inner journey toward self-awareness. Whether considering the seemingly eternal cacti or the desolate beauty of the Pinacate, he draws on sharp powers of observation to re-create what lies beyond his six-by-eight cell and to contemplate the thoughts that haunt his mind as tenaciously as the kissing bugs that haunt his sleep.
Ranging from prehistoric ruins on the Colorado Plateau to the shores of the Sea of Cortez, these writings were begun before Wilderness and Razor Wire and serve as a prequel to it. They seamlessly interweave natural and personal history as Lamberton explores caves, canyons, and dry ponds, evoking the mysteries and rhythms of desert life that elude even the most careful observers. He offers new ways of thinking about how we relate to the natural world, and about the links between those relationships and the ones we forge with other people. With the assurance of a gifted writer, he seeks to make sense of his own place in life, crafting words to come to terms with an insanity of his own making, to look inside himself and understand his passions and flaws.
Whether considering rattlesnakes of the hellish summer desert or the fellow inmates of his own personal hell, Lamberton finds meaningful connections—to his crime and his place, to the people who remained in his life and those who didn’t. But what he reveals in Beyond Desert Walls ultimately arises from language itself: a deep, and perhaps even frightening, understanding of a singular human nature.
Born in Sonora in 1868 to a Mexican mother and a German father, Federico Ronstadt was the quintessential borderman. He came to Arizona Territory as a young man to learn a trade and eventually became an American citizen; but with many relatives on both sides of the border, Federico was equally at home in Mexico and in his adopted country.
Writing proudly of his Mexican and American heritages, Ronstadt offers readers an extraordinary portrait of the Arizona-Mexico borderlands during the late nineteenth century. His memoirs provide a richness of detail and insight unmatched by traditional histories, relating such scenarios as the hardships of Yaqui hardrock miners working under primitive conditions, the travails of pearl divers in the Gulf of California, and the insurrection of Francisco Serna in 1875 Sonora. They also depict the simple activities of childhood, with its schooling and musical training, its games and mischief. Ronstadt relates his apprenticeship to a wagon- and carriage-maker in Tucson, recalling labor relations in the shop, the establishment of his own business, and the joys and anguish of his personal life. He tells of how he drew on talents nurtured in childhood to become a musician and bandleader, playing weekly concerts with Club Filarmónica Tucsonense for nine years—musical talents that were eventually passed on to his children, his grandchildren (including Linda), and great-grandchildren.
Through Ronstadt's memories, we are better able to understand the sense of independence and self-reliance found today among many lifelong residents of Sonora and Baja California—people isolated from major supply sources and centers of power—and to appreciate a different view of Tucson's past. Enhanced by 22 historical photos, Borderman is a treasure trove of historical source material that will enlighten all readers interested in borderlands history.
Focuses on an ethnographic collection gathered from a complex of Chinese dwellings, the importance of which lies in its size, diversity, good condition, and observable continuity of materials known from earlier periods of Chinese occupation in Tucson.
Phoenix is known as the “Valley of the Sun,” while Tucson is referred to as “The Old Pueblo.” These nicknames epitomize the difference in the public’s perception of each city. Phoenix continues to sprawl as one of America’s largest and fastest-growing cities. Tucson has witnessed a slower rate of growth, and has only one quarter of Phoenix’s population. This was not always the case. Prior to 1920, Tucson had a larger population. How did two cities, with such close physical proximity and similar natural environments develop so differently?
Desert Cities examines the environmental circumstances that led to the starkly divergent growth of these two cities. Michael Logan traces this significant imbalance to two main factors: water resources and cultural differences. Both cities began as agricultural communities. Phoenix had the advantage of a larger water supply, the Salt River, which has four and one half times the volume of Tucson’s Santa Cruz River. Because Phoenix had a larger river, it received federal assistance in the early twentieth century for the Salt River project, which provided water storage facilities. Tucson received no federal aid. Moreover, a significant cultural difference existed. Tucson, though it became a U.S. possession in 1853, always had a sizable Hispanic population. Phoenix was settled in the 1870s by Anglo pioneers who brought their visions of landscape development and commerce with them.
By examining the factors of watershed, culture, ethnicity, terrain, political favoritism, economic development, and history, Desert Cities offers a comprehensive evaluation that illuminates the causes of growth disparity in two major southwestern cities and provides a model for the study of bi-city resource competition.
Drawing on thousands of years of foodways, Tucson cuisine blends the influences of Indigenous, Mexican, mission-era Mediterranean, and ranch-style cowboy food traditions. This book offers a food pilgrimage, where stories and recipes demonstrate why the desert city of Tucson became American’s first UNESCO City of Gastronomy.
Both family supper tables and the city’s trendiest restaurants feature native desert plants and innovative dishes incorporating ancient agricultural staples. Award-winning writer Carolyn Niethammer deliciously shows how the Sonoran Desert’s first farmers grew tasty crops that continue to influence Tucson menus and how the arrival of Roman Catholic missionaries, Spanish soldiers, and Chinese farmers influenced what Tucsonans ate.
White Sonora wheat, tepary beans, and criollo cattle steaks make Tucson’s cuisine unique. In A Desert Feast, you’ll see pictures of kids learning to grow food at school, and you’ll meet the farmers, small-scale food entrepreneurs, and chefs who are dedicated to growing and using heritage foods. It’s fair to say, “Tucson tastes like nowhere else.”
When Mexico won its independence from Spain in 1821, citizens and missionaries in the northwestern reaches of the new nation were without the protection of Spanish military forces for the first time. Beset by hostile Apaches and the uncertainties of life in a desert wilderness, these early Mexican families forged a way of life that continues into the present day. This era in the history of southern Arizona and northern Sonora is now recalled in a series of historical documents that offer eyewitness accounts of daily life in the missions and towns of the region.
These documents give a sense of immediacy to the military operations, Indian activities, and missionary work going on in Tucson and the surrounding areas. They also demonstrate that Hispanic families maintained continuity in military and political control on the frontier, and clearly show that the frontier was not beset by anarchy in spite of the change in national government. In the forty chapters of translated documents in this collection, the voices of those who lived in what is now the Arizona-Sonora border region provide firsthand accounts of the people and events that shaped their era. These documents record such events as the arrival of the first Americans, the reconstruction of Tucson’s presidio wall, and conflict between Tohono O’odham villagers and Mexicans. All are set against the backdrop of an unrelenting Apache offensive that heightened after the departure of the Spanish military but that was held in check by civilian militias. Each chapter begins with a brief introduction in which historian Kieran McCarty provides background on the documents’ context and authorship. Taken together, they offer a fascinating look at this little-known period and provide a unique panorama of southwestern history.
It rises suddenly out of the Sonoran Desert landscape, towering over the tallest tree or cactus, a commanding building with a sensuous dome, elliptical vaults, and sturdy bell towers. There is nothing else like it around, nor does it seem there should be. This incongruity of setting is what strikes first-time visitors to Mission San Xavier del Bac. This great church is of another place and another time, while its beauty is universal and timeless.
Mission San Xavier del Bac is a two-century-old Spanish church in southern Arizona located just a few miles from downtown Tucson, a metropolis of more than half a million people in the American Southwest. A National Historic Landmark since 1963, the mission’s graceful baroque art and architecture have drawn visitors from all over the world.
Now Bernard Fontana—the leading expert on San Xavier—and award-winning photographer Edward McCain team up to bring us a comprehensive view of the mission as we’ve never seen it before. With 200 stunning full-color photographs and incisive text illuminating the religious, historical, and motivational context of these images, A Gift of Angels is a must-have for tourists, scholars, and other visitors to San Xavier.
From its glorious architecture all the way down to the finest details of its art, Mission San Xavier del Bac is indeed a gift of angels.
Tucson is a city rich in architectural heritage spanning three cultures, with a history of human settlement that makes it one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the United States. Hispanic barrios, American architectural forms, and remnants of a prehistoric Native American past give Tucson a unique and eclectic identity unlike any other city. This book is a comprehensive, richly illustrated guide to Tucson's significant historic and contemporary architectural resources—not only buildings, but ruins, open spaces, landscapes, and other elements that define the city’s built environment. It captures all facets of Tucson’s architecture, from one-of-a-kind homes on Main Avenue and historic downtown buildings to destination resorts in the Catalina Foothills and other modern structures. In this book readers will find:
- walking and driving tours of fourteen areas, complete with maps, beginning with central neighborhoods such as Barrio Historico and Armory Park and moving on to the rapidly expanding outlying areas
- annotated descriptions of individual structures—residences, schools, churches, government buildings, offices, commercial establishments, and others—enhanced by more than 120 photographs
- profiles of prominent Tucson architects, including Henry Trost, Josias Joesler, and Judith Chafee
- a guide to architectural styles found in Tucson—with examples—and a glossary of terms. A Guide to Tucson Architecture is the only book to offer such an extensive guided tour of one of America's favorite destination cities, capturing both its historic character and its dynamic growth. Through it, readers will appreciate the holistic balance of influences that has created Tucson's unique architectural expression and that defines its modern identity.
Arts as intimate as a piece of needlework or a home altar. Arts as visible as decorative iron, murals, and low riders. Through such arts, members of Tucson's Mexican American community contribute much of the cultural flavor that defines the city to its residents and to the outside world. Now Tucson folklorist Jim Griffith celebrates these public and private artistic expressions and invites us to meet the people who create them.
Josefina Lizárraga learned to make paper flowers as a girl in her native state of Nayarit, Mexico, and ensures that this delicate art is not lost.
Ornamental blacksmith William Flores runs the oldest blacksmithing business in town, a living link with an earlier Tucson.
Ramona Franco's family has maintained an elaborate altar to Our Lady of Guadalupe for three generations.
Signmaker Paul Lira, responsible for many of Tucson's most interesting signs, brings to his work a thoroughly mexicano sense of aesthetics and humor.
Muralists David Tineo and Luis Mena proclaim Mexican cultural identity in their work and carry on a tradition that has blossomed in the last twenty years.
Featuring a foreword by Tucson author Patricia Preciado Martin and a spectacular gallery of photographs, many by Pulitzer prize-winning photographer José Galvez, this remarkable book offers a close-up view of a community rich with tradition and diverse artistic expression. Hecho a Mano is a piñata bursting with unexpected treasures that will inspire and inform anyone with an interest in folk art or Mexican American culture.
“I am my language,” says the poet Gloria Anzaldúa, because language is at the heart of who we are. But what happens when a person has more than one language? Is there an overlay of language on identity, and do we shift identities as we shift languages? More important, what identities do children construct for themselves when they use different languages in particular ways?
In this book, Norma González uses language as a window on the multiple levels of identity construction in children—as well as on the complexities of life in the borderlands—to explore language practices and discourse patterns of Mexican-origin mothers and the language socialization of their children. She shows how the unique discourses that result from the interplay of two cultures shape perceptions of self and community, and how they influence the ways in which children learn and families engage with their children’s schools.
González demonstrates that the physical presence of the border profoundly affects the practices and ideologies of Mexican-origin women and children. She then argues that language and cultural background should be used as a basis for building academic competencies, and she demonstrates why the evocative/emotive dimension of language should play a major part in studies of discourse, language socialization, and language ideology.
Drawing on women’s own narratives of their experiences as both mothers and borderland residents, I Am My Language is firmly rooted in the words of common people in their everyday lives. It combines personal odyssey with cutting-edge ethnographic research, allowing us to hear voices that have been muted in the academic and public policy discussions of “what it means to be Latina/o” and showing us new ways to connect language to complex issues of education, political economy, and social identity.
It was all routine even if hundreds of pounds of earth were pressing down on their heads, even though the ceiling might potentially collapse at any moment, even if they were surrounded by a sea of darkness and had no idea what lay in front of them.
Award-winning author Neil Miller soon tells us that what lay in front of amateur spelunkers Randy Tufts and Gary Tenen was anything but routine. These young men had crawled into a virgin cave, a landscape untouched and unseen for hundreds of thousands of years. In cave terminology, this underground oasis was “living”—water still seeped down the limestone walls, depositing minerals that slowly built up into stunningly beautiful formations.
In a time when countless caves had been destroyed by vandals and looters who had defaced the walls and had broken formations, this pristine discovery was every caver’s dream. While duplicating that moment might seem difficult, this fascinating account of the fight to preserve Kartchner Caverns lends us the same sense of awe and urgency. In an arresting tale spanning the twenty-five-year period in which Tufts and Tenen struggled to protect their find, Miller skillfully weaves together personal interviews, biographical information, political maneuvering, and geological facts. Presented in full color with dazzling photographs showcasing the natural wonder of the caverns, this is an invitation to take in the mysterious, stunning beauty of a cave as if discovering it for the first time.
The triumph of the conservationists and the opening of Kartchner Caverns as a state park are known to anyone who has visited the caves as a tourist. But this narrative offers a chance to go beyond the guidebooks with its revealing look at this unspoiled natural wonder and the science of cave conservation. With as much depth and colorful detail as the caverns themselves, this page-turning account will captivate anyone interested in caves and the preservation of natural wonders.
On March 1, 1966, the voters of Tucson approved the Pueblo Center Redevelopment Project—Arizona’s first major urban renewal project—which targeted the most densely populated eighty acres in the state. For close to one hundred years, tucsonenses had created their own spatial reality in the historical, predominantly Mexican American heart of the city, an area most called “la calle.” Here, amid small retail and service shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues, they openly lived and celebrated their culture. To make way for the Pueblo Center’s new buildings, city officials proceeded to displace la calle’s residents and to demolish their ethnically diverse neighborhoods, which, contends Lydia Otero, challenged the spatial and cultural assumptions of postwar modernity, suburbia, and urban planning.
Otero examines conflicting claims to urban space, place, and history as advanced by two opposing historic preservationist groups: the La Placita Committee and the Tucson Heritage Foundation. She gives voice to those who lived in, experienced, or remembered this contested area, and analyzes the historical narratives promoted by Anglo American elites in the service of tourism and cultural dominance.
La Calle explores the forces behind the mass displacement: an unrelenting desire for order, a local economy increasingly dependent on tourism, and the pivotal power of federal housing policies. To understand how urban renewal resulted in the spatial reconfiguration of downtown Tucson, Otero draws on scholarship from a wide range of disciplines: Chicana/o, ethnic, and cultural studies; urban history, sociology, and anthropology; city planning; and cultural and feminist geography.
Legal and public policies concerning youth gun violence tend to rely heavily on crime reports, survey data, and statistical methods. Rarely is attention given to the young voices belonging to those who carry high-powered semiautomatic handguns. In Language of the Gun, Bernard E. Harcourt recounts in-depth interviews with youths detained at an all-malecorrectional facility, exploring how they talk about guns and what meanings they ascribe to them in a broader attempt to understand some of the assumptions implicit in current handgun policies. In the process, Harcourt redraws the relationships among empirical research, law, and public policy.
Home to over 150 repeat offenders ranging in age from twelve to seventeen, the Catalina Mountain School is made up of a particular stratum of boys—those who have committed the most offenses but will still be released upon reaching adulthood. In an effort to understand the symbolic and emotional language of guns and gun carrying, Harcourt interviewed dozens of these incarcerated Catalina boys. What do these youths see in guns? What draws them to handguns? Why do some of them carry and others not? For Harcourt, their often surprising answers unveil many of the presuppositions that influence our laws and policies.
Originally a presidio on the frontier of New Spain, Tucson was a Mexican community before the arrival of Anglo settlers. Unlike most cities in California and Texas, Tucson was not initially overwhelmed by Anglo immigrants, so that even until the early 1900s Mexicans made up a majority of the town's population. Indeed, it was through the efforts of Mexican businessmen and politicians that Tucson became a commercial center of the Southwest. Los Tucsonenses celebrates the efforts of these early entrepreneurs as it traces the Mexican community's gradual loss of economic and political power. Drawing on both statistical archives and pioneer reminiscences, Thomas Sheridan has written a history of Tucson's Mexican community that is both rigorous in its factual analysis and passionate in its portrayal of historic personages.
From 1914 to 1934 the US government sent Native American girls to work as domestic servants in the homes of white families. Matrons and Maids tells this forgotten history through the eyes of the women who facilitated their placements. During those two decades, “outing matrons” oversaw and managed the employment of young Indian women. In Tucson, Arizona, the matrons acted as intermediaries between the Indian and white communities and between the local Tucson community and the national administration, the Office of Indian Affairs.
Based on federal archival records, Matrons and Maids offers an original and detailed account of government practices and efforts to regulate American Indian women. Haskins demonstrates that the outing system was clearly about regulating cross-cultural interactions, and she highlights the roles played by white women in this history. As she compellingly argues, we cannot fully engage with cross-cultural histories without examining the complex involvement of white women as active, if ambivalent, agents of colonization.
Including stories of the entwined experiences of Indigenous and non-Indigenous women that range from the heart-warming to the heart-breaking, Matrons and Maids presents a unique perspective on the history of Indian policy and the significance of “women’s work.”
Unique among mission churches of the northern borderlands of colonial Mexico for its ornate architecture and rich iconography, San Xavier del Bac south of Tucson is a pilgrimage destination for countless devotees and tourists. Passing through the façade entry to stand in the nave, one is dazzled by the transept and sanctuary altarpieces of sculpture niches and baroque pilasters, as well as the expanse of the frescoed ceiling.
This book is the first study of the iconography at San Xavier since its restoration in the 1990s by an international team of professional conservators. It expands our understanding of the numerous Catholic images and emblems of San Xavier through a close analysis of the newly revealed iconographic elements and an interpretation of the significance of their placement. It also proposes that the selection of specific religious themes and their locations was determined by an unfamiliar convention based on a tree-like design, in which the founder of a religious Order appears as the root and followers above in later branchings—an inversion of the more familiar top-to-bottom hierarchy.
Historians Lange and Ahlborn identify all the saintly images and religious elements that adorn San Xavier and suggest how and why they are so arranged. They examine the sculptures and paintings of the church from the façade throughout the cruciform interior in order to determine the organizational concepts that underlie their placement. They note that the selection of images in this Franciscan mission follows traditional Roman Catholic practice for decorating churches in order to instruct novices and reinforce the teaching of conversion in a pictographic catechism of Church doctrine. In short, the book is a dictionary of religious personages and symbols that will help the visitor identify the biblical stories and people portrayed, as well as associated signs and symbols. Entries include a description of the subject, its location, appropriate cross-references, and a bibliography. Recent illustrations by photographer Helga Teiwes and a floor plan facilitate the location of images by visitors.
A handsome, large-format book featuring more than one hundred photographs and supporting line illustrations, Lange and Ahlborn’s work confirms the significance of San Xavier’s iconography for art historians, students of religion, and visitors alike. It is both an incomparable guide and valuable reference source for the famed mission’s magnificent artistic heritage.
You see them as faceless shapes on the median or in city parks. You recognize them by their cardboard signs, their bags of aluminum cans, or their weathered skin. But you do not know them.
In Nomads of a Desert City Barbara Seyda meets the gazes of our homeless neighbors and, with an open heart and the eye of an accomplished photographer, uncovers their compelling stories of life on the edge.
Byrdy is a teenager from Alaska who left a violent husband and misses the young daughter her mother now cares for. Her eyes show a wisdom that belies her youth. Samuel is 95 and collects cans for cash. His face shows a lifetime of living outside while his eyes hint at the countless stories he could tell. Lamanda worked as an accountant before an act of desperation landed her in prison. Now she struggles to raise the seven children of a woman she met there. Dorothy—whose earliest memories are of physical and sexual abuse—lives in a shelter, paycheck to paycheck, reciting affirmations so she may continue “to grace the world with my presence.”
They live on the streets or in shelters. They are women and men, young and old, Native or Anglo or Black or Hispanic. Their faces reflect the forces that have shaped their lives: alcoholism, poverty, racism, mental illness, and abuse. But like desert survivors, they draw strength from some hidden reservoir.
Few recent studies on homelessness offer such a revealing collection of oral history narratives and compelling portraits. Thirteen homeless women and men open a rare window to enrich our understanding of the complex personal struggles and triumphs of their lives. Nomads of a Desert City sheds a glaring light on the shadow side of the American Dream—and takes us to the crossroads of despair and hope where the human spirit survives.
When the Zoot Suit Riots ignited in Los Angeles in 1943, they quickly became headline news across the country. At their center was a series of attacks by U.S. Marines and sailors on young Mexican American men who dressed in distinctive suits and called themselves pachucos. The media of the day portrayed these youths as miscreants and hoodlums. Even though the outspoken First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt, quickly labeled them victims of race riots, the initial portrayal has distorted images ever since. A surprising amount of scholarship has reinforced those images, writes Laura Cummings, proceeding from what she calls “the deviance school of thought.”
This innovative study examines the pachuco phenomenon in a new way. Exploring its growth in Tucson, Arizona, the book combines ethnography, history, and sociolinguistics to contextualize the early years of the phenomenon, its diverse cultural roots, and its language development in Tucson.
Unlike other studies, it features first-person research with men and women who—despite a wide span of ages—self-identify as pachucos and pachucas. Through these interviews and her archival research, the author finds that pachuco culture has deep roots in Tucson and the Southwest. And she discovers the importance of the pachuco/caló language variety to a shared sense of pachuquismo. Further, she identifies previously neglected pachuco ties to indigenous Indian languages and cultures in Mexico and the United States.
Cummings stresses that the great majority of people conversant with the culture and language do not subscribe to the dynamics of contemporary hardcore gangs, but while zoot suits are no longer the rage today, the pachuco language and sensibilities do live on in Mexican American communities across the Southwest and throughout the United States.
George Carpenter Barker's first major research project was field work in Tucson, Arizona on the function of language in a situation of culture contact. The results of his doctoral dissertation, "Social Functions of Language in a Mexican-American Community." The data and conclusions presented in his dissertation showed his perceptiveness in cross-cultural situations.
He conducted additional field work on the social functions of language in cross-cultural situations in Tucson in 1947-48. This work centered around interviews with Mexican-American youths. Barker's quiet friendliness and understanding won the confidence of boys who were operating at the fringes, and who were his informants for this Pachuco study.
Prisons and Patriots provides a detailed account of forty-one Nisei (second-generation Japanese Americans), known as the Tucsonians, who were imprisoned for resisting the draft during WWII. Cherstin Lyon parallels their courage as resisters with that of civil rights hero Gordon Hirabayashi, well known for his legal battle against curfew and internment, who also resisted the draft. These dual stories highlight the intrinsic relationship between the rights and the obligations of citizenship, particularly salient in times of war.
Lyon considers how wartime civil disobedience has been remembered through history—how soldiers have been celebrated for their valor while resisters have been demonized as unpatriotic. Using archival research and interviews, she presents a complex picture of loyalty and conflict among first-generation Issei and Nisei. Lyon contends that the success of the redress movement has made room for a narrative that neither reduces the wartime confinement to a source of shame nor proffers an uncritical account of heroic individuals.
Racism. Is it alive and well and living on college campuses across the United States? Is it a factor in high dropout rates and other crises affecting minority college students, and if so, how? Are controversial programs of affirmative action proving to be a solution--or are they part of the problem?
Here are some insights into the hot issues sparking debate over equal opportunity and American education. In these pages, through the use of a fictional character, author Jay Rochlin presents more than forty very real African American and Mexican American men and women who struggled to earn degrees at a large, nationally recognized university in the west. Their goals, their gains, and their disappointments echo the experiences of millions of others around the country during much of the twentieth century. Perhaps most important, their true stories will provide inspiration to the many young people who wonder whether pursuing the dream of a college education is possible for them.
Readers will warm to the words of Carlos Vélez-Ibáñez, learning as a toddler from his father that the university represented toda la sabiduría del mundo,"all the wisdom in the world." Their hearts will go out to young Laura Banks, barred as a black woman from a "whites only" pool and the swimming class required for her degree in physical education. In the face of open hostility and closed doors, these students and many others persevered. When they were shunned by Anglo social clubs, they created their own. When they were assigned "back of the room" seating because of discrimination, they rose above it. And when their ultimate goal--graduation--was threatened by racism, they fought it.
Looking back, many in the book remember coming from poor families who nonetheless considered themselves middle class and, as such, simply expected their children to go to college. This family support--bolstered by the students' own drive, ambition, and sense of responsibility--seemed to be pivotal to their success. Thus the book comes out strongly on the side of critical race theorists, who emphasize individual effort as a means of combating racism and personal narratives as a way of analyzing the complex issue.
These pages are filled with the voices of everyday men and women. Their language is straightforward and from the heart. Their message is timely, in the midst of current debates over race, class, and affirmative action. And their words--for American education and for the country as a whole--carry force and meaning guaranteed to reach far into the future.
The well-known and controversial Mexican American studies (MAS) program in Arizona’s Tucson Unified School District set out to create an equitable and excellent educational experience for Latino students. Raza Studies: The Public Option for Educational Revolution offers the first comprehensive account of this progressive—indeed revolutionary—program by those who created it, implemented it, and have struggled to protect it.
Inspired by Paulo Freire’s vision for critical pedagogy and Chicano activists of the 1960s, the designers of the program believed their program would encourage academic achievement and engagement by Mexican American students. With chapters by leading scholars, this volume explains how the program used “critically compassionate intellectualism” to help students become “transformative intellectuals” who successfully worked to improve their level of academic achievement, as well as create social change in their schools and communities.
Despite its popularity and success inverting the achievement gap, in 2010 Arizona state legislators introduced and passed legislation with the intent of banning MAS or any similar curriculum in public schools. Raza Studies is a passionate defense of the program in the face of heated local and national attention. It recounts how one program dared to venture to a world of possibility, hope, and struggle, and offers compelling evidence of success for social justice education programs.
Marriage, divorce, birth, baptism, and census records are the essential records of a community. Through them we see who marries, who divorces, and how many children are born. Sal Acosta has studied a broad base of these vital records to produce the largest quantitative study of intermarriage of any group in the West. Sanctioning Matrimony examines intermarriage in the Tucson area between 1860 and 1930. Unlike previous studies on intermarriage, this book examines not only intermarriages of Mexicans with whites but also their unions with blacks and Chinese.
Following the Treaty of Mesilla (1853), interethnic relationships played a significant part in the Southwest. Acosta provides previously unseen archival research on the scope and tenor of interracial marriages in Arizona. Contending that scholarship on intermarriage has focused on the upper classes, Acosta takes us into the world of the working and lower classes and illuminates how church and state shaped the behavior of participants in interracial unions.
Marriage practices in Tucson reveal that Mexican women were pivotal in shaping family and social life between 1854 and 1930. Virtually all intermarriages before 1900 were, according to Acosta, between Mexican women and white men, or between Mexican women and blacks or Chinese until the 1920s, illustrating the importance of these women during the transformation of Tucson from a Mexican pueblo to an American town.
Acosta’s deep analysis of vital records, census data, and miscegenation laws in Arizona demonstrates how interethnic relationships benefited from and extended the racial fluidity of the Arizona borderlands.
Bobby Burns University of Arizona Press, 1998 Library of Congress HV4506.T83B87 1998 | Dewey Decimal 362.5092
Bobby Burns arrived in Tucson, Arizona, with a few dollars in his pocket and no place to live. Without family, without a job, he had nowhere to go but a homeless shelter. How did a college graduate find himself so close to life on the streets? In a voice that is startling for its simplicity and utter honesty, Burns tells the story of how he slipped into homelessness, how he learned what it means to live in a place where nobody will notice if you disappear, and how he emerged to tell his story. Bobby's diary of 41 days without a home brings readers into the world of a homeless shelter.
Shelter is filled with the sights and sounds of homelessness. Shelter life is patterned by meals provided by church volunteers, lines for soap and clean towels, the repeated meticulous washing of hands by an obsessive-compulsive resident, the rare pleasure of a fried chicken dinner, the illicit smell of marijuana within the shelter. Burns witnesses the residents' struggles with drugs, alcohol, and disability, and he wonders daily whether he will have the courage to emerge from this life. Bobby's diary expresses the full range of emotions of a homeless person: anger, self-pity, pride, humility, shame, depression, and optimism. These are not contradictions; taken together they represent the real feelings provoked by homelessness.
But with rare inner courage, Bobby stokes the fires of hope within himself, marking the days in his journal to keep himself from sliding deeper into a spiral of despair. Bobby confronts his own stereotypes about the homeless and learns firsthand what it means to struggle daily for survival and for dignity. He learns greater courage and he learns greater kindness. He is given food and a bed for 41 days, but he finds shelter on his own, deep within himself.
“I hole up in my own cozy cubicle and write, considering ways to make the approaching Thanksgiving holiday not just another day in this place. In prison, hope faces east; time is measured in wake-ups.”
Time of Grace is a remarkable book, written with great eloquence by a former science teacher who was incarcerated for twelve years for his sexual liaison with a teenage student. Far more than a “prison memoir,” it is an intimate and revealing look at relationships—with fellow humans and with the surprising wildlife of the Sonoran Desert, both inside and beyond prison walls. Throughout, Ken Lamberton reflects on human relations as they mimic and defy those of the natural world, whose rhythms calibrate Lamberton’s days and years behind bars. He writes with candor about his life, while observing desert flora and fauna with the insight and enthusiasm of a professional naturalist.
While he studies a tarantula digging her way out of the packed earth and observes Mexican freetail bats sailing into the evening sky, Lamberton ruminates on his crime and on the wrenching effects it has had on his wife and three daughters. He writes of his connections with his fellow inmates—some of whom he teaches in prison classes—and with the guards who control them, sometimes with inexplicable cruelty. And he unflinchingly describes a prison system that has gone horribly wrong—a system entrapped in a self-created web of secrecy, fear, and lies.
This is the final book of Lamberton’s trilogy about the twelve years he spent in prison. Readers of his earlier books will savor this last volume. Those who are only now discovering Lamberton’s distinctive voice—part poet, part scientist, part teacher, and always deeply, achingly human—will feel as if they are making a new friend.
Gripping, sobering, and beautifully written, Lamberton’s memoir is an unforgettable exploration of crime, punishment, and the power of the human spirit.
The Tucson Meteorites—the two known fragments totaling more that a ton of primordial space matter—were discovered during the first half of the nineteenth century on the desolate Mexican frontier that later became Arizona. In this book, Richard R. Willey recounts the bizarre history of these meteorites and explores the mystery, unresolved to the present day, of where they fell to earth and whether more fragments remain to be found in the mountains of southern Arizona.
Willey tracks the meteorites through years of confiscation and disputed ownership to the Smithsonian Institution. "I had seen passing allusions to the Meteorite in occasional writings on Tucson’s colorful history," he recalls, "but little that hinted at the social, political, and military involvement that the Meteorite had enjoyed in the Southwest of yesteryear, nor of the mystery surrounding other, yet unfound ‘enormous masses’ of the Meteorite." The book features both historical illustrations and photographs of the meteorite fragments and also includes data on their physical characteristics. Willey’s story will leave readers with an enhanced appreciation of life on the early Arizona frontier and of the facts surrounding the fate of the Tucson Meteorites in that frontier setting.
Tucson prides itself on being the Mexican Food Capital of America—and it's no wonder, with more than 150 restaurants to choose from. This book is a celebration of that culinary tradition, providing readers with not only a guide to outstanding eateries but also an intimate look at the heritage they represent.
From the traditional restaurants of South Tucson to newer dining spots on the north and east sides, Tucson's Mexican Restaurants is an affectionate look at some of the best places to savor this wonderful cuisine. Suzanne Myal takes readers into the kitchens of many of these establishments to offer insights into the families that run them, the secrets of food preparation, and even the history of some of Tucson's best-loved recipes. Many of those recipes, along with others from prominent Mexican American families, are reproduced in the book, inviting readers to try their hand at red beef tamales, chiles rellenos, and other favorite dishes.
The book is organized by six sections of town, with a locator map for each. The entry for each establishment includes address, hours, price range, and credit card information, and indicates the specialties of the house. Each entry is also coded for features such as level of alcohol service; availability of carryout, delivery, and catering; and whether the menu features heart-healthy or vegetarian options. A separate section lists Mexican bakeries and tortilla factories, and a guide to fiestas helps readers choose beer or tequila—and find menudo when they've overindulged.
From street trucks to historic sites, Mexican restaurants in Tucson offer something for every palate. This book can help visitors and residents alike find their way around them and better enjoy some of the best Mexican food north of the border.