Refusing the Favor: The Spanish-Mexican Women of Santa Fe, 1820-1880 by Deena J. Gonzalez

Refusing the Favor: The Spanish-Mexican Women of Santa Fe, 1820-1880

byDeena J. Gonzalez

Paperback | April 15, 2001

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Refusing the Favor tells the little-known story of the Spanish-Mexican women who saw their homeland become part of New Mexico. A corrective to traditional narratives of the period, it carefully and lucidly documents the effects of colonization, looking closely at how the women lived bothbefore and after the United States took control of the region. Focusing on Santa Fe, which was long one of the largest cities west of the Mississippi, Deena Gonzalez demonstrates that women's responses to the conquest were remarkably diverse and that their efforts to preserve their culture were complex and long-lasting. Drawing on a range of sources, fromnewspapers to wills, deeds, and court records, Gonzalez shows that the change to U.S. territorial status did little to enrich or empower the Spanish-Mexican inhabitants. The vast majority, in fact, found themselves quickly impoverished, and this trend toward low-paid labor, particularly for women,continues even today. Gonzalez both examines the long-term consequences of colonization and draws illuminating parallels with the experiences of other minorities. Refusing the Favor also describes how and why Spanish-Mexican women have remained invisible in the histories of the region for so long. It avoids casting the story as simply "bad" Euro-American migrants and "good" local people by emphasizing the concrete details of how women lived. It covers everyaspect of their experience, from their roles as businesswomen to the effects of intermarriage, and it provides an essential key to the history of New Mexico. Anyone with an interest in Western history, gender studies, Chicano/a studies, or the history of borderlands and colonization will find thebook an invaluable resource and guide.

About The Author

Deena J. Gonzalez is at Pomona College, Claremont, CA.

Details & Specs

Title:Refusing the Favor: The Spanish-Mexican Women of Santa Fe, 1820-1880Format:PaperbackDimensions:308 pages, 5.71 × 8.9 × 0.71 inPublished:April 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195145941

ISBN - 13:9780195145946

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Table of Contents

Prologue1. Women in the Courts: Conformity and Dissonance before the War, 1821-18462. Women under Siege: Sexuality and the Gendered Economies of Colonization, 1840-18523. Women's Survival Strategies: Gifts and Giving as Methods of Resistance, 1846-18804. The Politics of Disidentification and Recuperation: Notations about the "New" Western American HistoryEpilogueNotesBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"Should be added to the short list of works that further our knowledge of Spanish-Mexican women in New Mexico. This work is recommended highly for the specialist, but the general reader should also find it of interest." Western Historical Quarterly