This Land Was Mexican Once is a well-thought-out and carefully organized book that provides historical background on Northern California. It explores important questions that seek to shine light on the ways that social systems were established throughout the region and normalized through the use of history. Author Linda Heidenreich attempts to destabilize white supremacist narratives by using a wealth of primary sources to present an account of the Napa Valley as it was experienced by nonwhites since the beginning of the nineteenth century. She makes use of Prasenjit Duara’s notion of “bifurcated history,” which is “to write a history that recovers counter memories while demonstrating ways in which the past was transmitted to the present” (p. 4), and utilizes testimonios, including those dictated to Enrique Cerruti by Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, Salvador Vallejo, and Rosalia Vallejo de Leese; census records; and birth and...
Book Review| November 01 2011
This Land Was Mexican Once: Histories of Resistance from Northern California
This Land Was Mexican Once: Histories of Resistance from Northern California. By Heidenreich, Linda.
University of Texas Press,
255pp. , $19.95. , $50.00.
Hispanic American Historical Review (2011) 91 (4): 744–745.
Carmen Martínez-Calderón; This Land Was Mexican Once: Histories of Resistance from Northern California. Hispanic American Historical Review 1 November 2011; 91 (4): 744–745. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00182168-1416963
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