restricted access Preface
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This book is an introduction to the unique Hispanic community of Antonito in Conejos County, Colorado, just six miles north of the New Mexico border and 110 miles north of Santa Fe. Most people in Antonito reported having Spanish, Mexican, and Indian ancestors, sprinkled with various “Anglo” influences. Their community’s roots lie in the mixed ranching and farming subsistence economy of the early Hispanic settlers in the Upper Rio Grande region who came north from New Mexico in the mid-nineteenth century and pushed out the Utes and Navajos. They laid claim to the land by living on it, cultivating it, grazing their animals on it, and building acequias to irrigate it. This long-standing Hispanic community and culture is presented through the words of several Antonito women. I gathered their words in food-centered life history interviews between 1996 and 2006. I use food as a lens through which to see Mexicanas’ relation to land, labor, family, and community—to see their world through their eyes. Because this book is based on diverse people’s stories about their lives, it presents multiple views based on remembered worlds. People always censor and embellish their memories, and others in Antonito would see the same things quite differently. Three frames organize women’s food-centered life histories. The first is the examination of their sense of belonging in place and history that is a hallmark of what Latino scholars have called cultural citizenship. The second frame is Chicano environmentalism, which seeks to promote just and sustainable communities and to document Mexicano food production and land and water use. The third frame is a melding of Latina feminism and feminist ethnography, which prioritizes the perspectives and experiences of women, especially those like the rural Mexicanas in this book who have been previously excluded from the pages of history. P R E F A C E Counihan_2PP.indd XIII Counihan_2PP.indd XIII 8/20/09 10:15:19 AM 8/20/09 10:15:19 AM A T O R T I L L A I S L I K E L I F E XIV By including their voices, I hope not only to describe Antonito culture but also to promote its survival. To that end, and in the belief that education is the path to empowerment, all royalties are going to the Antonito Scholarship Fund at Adams State College. Counihan_2PP.indd XIV Counihan_2PP.indd XIV 8/20/09 10:15:19 AM 8/20/09 10:15:19 AM ...


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Subject Headings

  • Food habits -- Colorado -- Antonito -- History.
  • Food -- Symbolic aspects -- Colorado -- Antonito.
  • Hispanic Americans -- Food -- Colorado -- Antonito.
  • Antonito (Colo.) -- History.
  • Hispanic American women -- Colorado -- Antonito -- Social conditions.
  • Antonito (Colo.) -- Social life and customs.
  • Hispanic Americans -- Colorado -- Antonito -- Ethnic identity.
  • Hispanic Americans -- Land tenure -- Colorado -- Antonito.
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