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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A Few Notes on Abiquiu

Since we had never been in this area, we drove through Abiquiu before heading back south. The little time that I've been living here in New Mexico, I've heard a lot about O'Keeffe, Abiquiu, and Ghost Ranch. Also, I've skimmed through Witches of Abiquiu in Bookworks, the local independent bookstore here in town.

About a month ago, I bought Geen a book by one of Georgia O'Keeffe's neighbors. It's called The Genízaro and the Artist, and the author is Napoleón Garcia with help from Analinda Dunn.

I haven't heard a lot about genízaros, but I've heard some. Last fall, before I was going to teach an introductory course in Chicano Hispano Mexicano Studies, I read a lot about New Mexican history. In those readings is where I encountered the term genízaro. I did not find one clear definition, but for those unfamiliar with it, here is my patched together definition from memory: Native person, often from a Pueblo, who worked for Hispano families and often lived with them. In some cases, these Natives had been sold into servitude--slavery in form though not name--by other Natives (non-Pueblos, including Apaches, Comanches, and Utes) or Spaniards. The genízaros didn't remain connected to other Natives. Also, there was mixing between these Natives and Hispanos. I don't have a handy list of sources, but Nuevo México Profundo: Rituals of an Indo-Hispano Homeland has an essay by Enrique Lamadrid that discusses this term.

We stayed long enough to take some fotos. Here's one of them.

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