River of Hope brings a wider set of characters and a longer historical analysis to trouble a seemingly familiar story: the establishment of new social identities in the wake of newly imposed political borders. Omar Valerio-Jiménez brings the fractures that appeared in the earlier Spanish rule and cattle economy imposed on Indian nations in the lower Rio Grande Valley to bear on the creation of the United States–Mexico border. The broad and institutionally diverse archival net, spread from the General Archives of the Indies in Spain to municipal archives in Tamaulipas, Coahuila, and Nuevo León, capture the diversity of Spanish and Mexican attempts to forge a profitable occupation over the Mexican and indigenous peoples working in both the lower Rio Grande Valley and the Huasteca watershed. River of Hope deepens our understanding of how local residents' regionalisms, “cultural practices, and kinship ties...
Book Review|February 01 2015
River of Hope: Forging Identity and Nation in the Rio Grande Borderlands
Hispanic American Historical Review (2015) 95 (1): 187-188.