Academic journal article Pennsylvania Literary Journal

A History of the Struggle of the Huichol Indians in Mexico

Academic journal article Pennsylvania Literary Journal

A History of the Struggle of the Huichol Indians in Mexico

Article excerpt

A History of the Struggle of the Huichol Indians in Mexico Michele McArdle Stephens. In the Lands of Fire and Sun: Resistance and Accommodation in the Huichol Sierra, 1723-1930. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, May 1, 2018. $50. ISBN: 978-0-8032-8858-4. 222pp.

This is a history of the Huichol Indians in Mexico, and how they have held onto their independence for centuries since the days of Spanish initial colonization of the region. Archeology helps to fill gaps in the written record of these distant times. The author, Michele Stephens, is an assistant professor of Latin American history at West Virginia University. The book includes a few photographs of Huichol Indians in traditional clothing, face paint, feathers, and other intricate cultural details. It also includes some lithographs from Mexico City that depict the "Congress of Huichol Indians" and "Salute to the Sun." Their yarn painting of Kauyumarie and peyote has a uniquely abstract style, with circles with crosses inside of them and other geometric shapes.

A closeup of a traditional Shaman's straw hat with crosses on it also has a unique style unlike other Native American tribes. Maps of the region show their strongholds, neighboring mining towns, and other geographical features. The book is chronologically organized. It begins with the history of Spanish conquest. The next chapter looks at how it became a young Nation-State. …

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