Theological author, holy apparition, legend of the borderlands—over the four centuries since she lived, Sor María de Ágreda has amassed many divergent identities and contradictory legacies. The most persistent of these personas is the Lady in Blue, a woman who began visiting and catechizing the Jumano people of eastern New Mexico in 1628. By the nineteenth century, the Lady in Blue had eclipsed Sor María's identity as a historical and authorial figure; she remains a pervasive presence in the borderlands today. But, as Anna M. Nogar's meticulous and comprehensive Quill and Cross in the Borderlands posits, Sor María's authorial and evangelical identities are fundamentally intertwined. In fact, Nogar contends, Sor María's religious works, and subsequent royal and Franciscan advocacy, entrenched the Lady in Blue narrative.

Quill and Cross in the Borderlands unfolds in six roughly chronological chapters. Chapters 1 and 2 elaborate...

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