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Américo Paredes: in His Own Words, an Authorized Biography

Américo Paredes: in His Own Words, an Authorized Biography

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Date: April 15, 2010
Creator: Medrano, Manuel F.
Description: Américo Paredes (1915-1999) was a folklorist, scholar, and professor at the University of Texas at Austin who is widely acknowledged as one of the founding scholars of Chicano Studies. Born in Brownsville, Texas, along the southern U.S.-Mexico Border, Paredes grew up between two worlds—one written about in books, the other sung about in ballads and narrated in folktales. After service in World War II, Paredes entered the University of Texas at Austin, where he completed his Ph.D. in 1956. With the publication of his dissertation, “With His Pistol in His Hand”: A Border Ballad and Its Hero in 1958, Paredes soon emerged as a challenger to the status quo. His book questioned the mythic nature of the Texas Rangers and provided an alternative counter-cultural narrative to the existing traditional narratives of Walter Prescott Webb and J. Frank Dobie. For the next forty years Paredes was a brilliant teacher and prolific writer who championed the preservation of border culture and history. He was a soft-spoken, at times temperamental, yet fearless professor. In 1970 he co-founded the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and is credited with introducing the concept of Greater Mexico, decades before its ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Press
Californio Voices: The Oral Memoirs of José María Amador and Lorenzo Asisara

Californio Voices: The Oral Memoirs of José María Amador and Lorenzo Asisara

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Date: April 15, 2005
Creator: Gregorio Mora-Torres
Description: In the early 1870s, Hubert H. Bancroft and his assistants set out to record the memoirs of early Californios, one of them being eighty-three-year-old Don José María Amador, a former “Forty-Niner” during the California Gold Rush and soldado de cuera at the Presidio of San Francisco. Amador tells of reconnoitering expeditions into the interior of California, where he encountered local indigenous populations. He speaks of political events of Mexican California and the widespread confiscation of the Californios’ goods, livestock, and properties when the United States took control. A friend from Mission Santa Cruz, Lorenzo Asisara, also describes the harsh life and mistreatment the Indians faced from the priests. Both the Amador and Asisara narratives were used as sources in Bancroft’s writing but never published themselves. Gregorio Mora-Torres has now rescued them from obscurity and presents their voices in English translation (with annotations) and in the original Spanish on facing pages. This bilingual edition will be of great interest to historians of the West, California, and Mexican American studies. “This book presents a very convincing and interesting narrative about Mexican California. Its frankness and honesty are refreshing.”–Richard Griswold del Castillo, San Diego State University
Contributing Partner: UNT Press
Contested Policy: The Rise and Fall of Federal Bilingual Education in the United States, 1960-2001

Contested Policy: The Rise and Fall of Federal Bilingual Education in the United States, 1960-2001

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Date: March 15, 2004
Creator: San Miguel, Guadalupe, Jr.
Description: Bilingual education is one of the most contentious and misunderstood educational programs in the country. It raises significant questions about this country’s national identity, the nature of federalism, power, ethnicity, and pedagogy. In Contested Policy , Guadalupe San Miguel, Jr., studies the origins, evolution, and consequences of federal bilingual education policy from 1960 to 2001, with particular attention to the activist years after 1978, when bilingual policy was heatedly contested. Traditionally, those in favor of bilingual education are language specialists, Mexican American activists, newly enfranchised civil rights advocates, language minorities, intellectuals, teachers, and students. They are ideologically opposed to the assimilationist philosophy in the schools, to the structural exclusion and institutional discrimination of minority groups, and to limited school reform. On the other hand, the opponents of bilingual education, comprised at different points in time of conservative journalists, politicians, federal bureaucrats, Anglo parent groups, school officials, administrators, and special-interest groups (such as U.S. English), favor assimilationism, the structural exclusion and discrimination of ethnic minorities, and limited school reform. In the 1990s a resurgence of opposition to bilingual education succeeded in repealing bilingual legislation with an English-only piece of legislation. San Miguel deftly provides a history of these clashing groups and ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Press
Life in Laredo: a Documentary History From the Laredo Archives

Life in Laredo: a Documentary History From the Laredo Archives

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Date: March 15, 2004
Creator: Wood, Robert D.
Description: Based on documents from the Laredo Archives, Life in Laredo shows the evolution and development of daily life in a town under the flags of Spain, Mexico, and the United States. Isolated on the northern frontier of New Spain and often forgotten by authorities far away, the people of Laredo became as grand as the river that flowed by their town and left an enduring legacy in a world of challenges and changes. Because of its documentary nature, Life in Laredo offers in sights into the nitty-gritty of the comings and goings of its early citizens not to be found elsewhere. Robert D. Wood, S.M., presents the first one hundred years of history and culture in Laredo up to the mid-nineteenth century, illuminating--with primary source evidence--the citizens' beliefs, cultural values, efforts to make a living, political seesawing, petty quarreling, and constant struggles against local Indians. He also details rebellious military and invading foreigners among the early settlers and later townspeople. Scholars and students of Texas and Mexican American history, as well as the Laredoans celebrating the 250th anniversary (in 2005) of Laredo's founding, will welcome this volume. "Although there have been a number of books on the history of Laredo, ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Press
The Roots of Latino Urban Agency

The Roots of Latino Urban Agency

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Date: November 15, 2013
Creator: Navarro, Sharon A. & Rosales, Rodolfo
Description: The 2010 U.S. Census data showed that over the last decade the Latino population grew from 35.3 million to 50.5 million, accounting for more than half of the nation’s population growth. The editors of The Roots of Latino Urban Agency, Sharon Navarro and Rodolfo Rosales, have collected essays that examine this phenomenal growth. The greatest demographic expansion of communities of Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, and Cuban Americans seeking political inclusion and access has been observed in Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and San Antonio. Three premises guide this study. The first premise holds that in order to understand the Latino community in all its diversity, the analysis has to begin at the grassroots level. The second premise maintains that the political future of the Latino community in the United States in the twenty-first century will be largely determined by the various roles they have played in the major urban centers across the nation. The third premise argues that across the urban political landscape the Latino community has experienced different political formations, strategies and ultimately political outcomes in their various urban settings. These essays collectively suggest that political agency can encompass everything from voting, lobbying, networking, grassroots organizing, and mobilization, to dramatic ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Press
Sea La Luz: The Making of Mexican Protestantism in the American Southwest, 1829-1900

Sea La Luz: The Making of Mexican Protestantism in the American Southwest, 1829-1900

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Date: September 15, 2006
Creator: Martinez, Juan Francisco
Description: Mexican Protestantism was born in the encounter between Mexican Catholics and Anglo American Protestants, after the United States ventured into the Southwest and wrested territory from Mexico in the early nineteenth century. Sea la Luz tells the story of Mexican converts and the churches they developed through the records of Protestant missionaries. Juan Francisco Martinez traces Protestant mission work among the Spanish speaking of the Southwest throughout the nineteenth century. By 1900, about 150 Spanish-speaking Protestant churches with more than five thousand adult members existed in the region. They were rejected by their own people because they were Protestants, but Anglo American Protestants did not readily accept them either because they were Mexican. In spite of the pressures from both their own community and the larger society, they forged a new religious identity in the midst of conquest.
Contributing Partner: UNT Press
Traqueros: Mexican Railroad Workers in the United States, 1870 to 1930

Traqueros: Mexican Railroad Workers in the United States, 1870 to 1930

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Date: December 15, 2012
Creator: Garcilazo, Jeffrey Marcos
Description: Perhaps no other industrial technology changed the course of Mexican history in the United States—and Mexico—than did the coming of the railroads. Tens of thousands of Mexicans worked for the railroads in the United States, especially in the Southwest and Midwest. Extensive Mexican American settlements appeared throughout the lower and upper Midwest as the result of the railroad. Only agricultural work surpassed railroad work in terms of employment of Mexicans. In Traqueros, Jeffrey Marcos Garcílazo mined numerous archives and other sources to provide the first and only comprehensive history of Mexican railroad workers across the United States, with particular attention to the Midwest. He first explores the origins and process of Mexican labor recruitment and immigration and then describes the areas of work performed. He reconstructs the workers’ daily lives and explores not only what the workers did on the job but also what they did at home and how they accommodated and/or resisted Americanization. Boxcar communities, strike organizations, and “traquero culture” finally receive historical acknowledgment. Integral to his study is the importance of family settlement in shaping working class communities and consciousness throughout the Midwest.
Contributing Partner: UNT Press