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Songs My Mother Sang to Me: An Oral History of Mexican American Women

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"Motivated by the love of her own Mexican American heritage, Preciado Martin has documented the lives and memories of ten women of her mother's and grandmother's eras. These women relate the histories of their ancestors and their communities, including their lives on family-run farms, in mining towns, and on cattle ranches, adding to our awareness of the culture and contributions of Mexican American people in the Southwest. Representing one of the few studies focusing on Arizona, on rural life, and on the transition from rural to urban, this
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Overview

"Motivated by the love of her own Mexican American heritage, Preciado Martin has documented the lives and memories of ten women of her mother's and grandmother's eras. These women relate the histories of their ancestors and their communities, including their lives on family-run farms, in mining towns, and on cattle ranches, adding to our awareness of the culture and contributions of Mexican American people in the Southwest. Representing one of the few studies focusing on Arizona, on rural life, and on the transition from rural to urban, this collection provides an important counterpoint to the largely urban orientation of contemporary Chicano scholarship.--Latin American Resource Review
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
As a counterpoint to the largely urban and California/Texas orientation of Chicano scholarship, Martin ( Images and Conversations ) has interviewed 10 Arizona-area Mexican-American women born in the early part of the century, showing the mosaic of life in rural and urban areas as well as ranching and mining towns. Aware of negative stereotypes of Mexicana women, Martin notes that her subjects have a wide range of experiences--one working as a radio journalist, another a laundress and a third a Eucharistic minister at a hospital. The oral histories--presented as narratives, not dialogues--are full of details of the women's daily lives, from cooking to childhood songs to religious practice, but they likely will interest only specialists. There are notable moments: Julia Yslas Velez adopted a political maxim from a black activist: ``I want Mexican faces in high places''; Carmen Celia Beltran recalls how her father's political involvement in Mexico forced her family to hide in the mountains. However, one wishes Martin also probed issues like class consciousness and marriage to Anglo husbands. Photographs, mainly of the subjects in their youth and their parents, add texture to the interviews. (Nov.)
Booknews
In ten oral histories recorded by Martin, Mexican American women of the Southwest reach as far back as the turn of the century to recall family history and genealogy, secular and religious traditions, work and leisure, living conditions, and personal values. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780816512799
  • Publisher: University of Arizona Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/1992
  • Pages: 224

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