Veteran’s Day Lecture

Dr. Juan Coronado, SOHA Co-president, delivered a lecture at the University of Houston this past week to honor Veteran’s Day. His work focuses on Latino #Vietnam military experiences. View the review of his recent #book on the SOHA blog, sohanews.wordpress.com/2018/10/05/im-not-gonna-die-in-this-damn-place.

#military #historian #history #Texas #Houston #lecture #publication #oralhistory #narrative

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The Earth Memory Compass

king.jpgCongratulations to Farina King, SOHA 2nd VP, for her recent book publication!

The Earth Memory Compass: Diné Landscapes and Education in the Twentieth Century

The Diné, or Navajo, have their own ways of knowing and being in the world, a cultural identity linked to their homelands through ancestral memory. The Earth Memory Compasstraces this tradition as it is imparted from generation to generation, and as it has been transformed, and often obscured, by modern modes of education. An autoethnography of sorts, the book follows Farina King’s search for her own Diné identity as she investigates the interconnections among Navajo students, their people, and Diné Bikéyah—or Navajo lands—across the twentieth century.

In her exploration of how historical changes in education have reshaped Diné identity and community, King draws on the insights of ethnohistory, cultural history, and Navajo language. At the center of her study is the Diné idea of the Four Directions, in which each of the cardinal directions takes its meaning from a sacred mountain and its accompanying element: East, for instance, is Sis Naajin (Blanca Peak) and white shell; West, Dook’o’oosłííd (San Francisco Peaks) and abalone; North, Dibé Nitsaa (Hesperus Peak) and black jet; South, Tsoodził (Mount Taylor) and turquoise. King elaborates on the meanings and teachings of the mountains and directions throughout her book to illuminate how Navajos have embedded memories in landmarks to serve as a compass for their people—a compass threatened by the dislocation and disconnection of Diné students from their land, communities, and Navajo ways of learning.

“Farina King’s study offers a passionate and thoughtful account of how the Diné, by holding on to their sacred ways of knowing and living, have withstood the long ordeal of educational colonialism. Beautifully written, bold in conception, and packed with intimate stories, this is a must-read for those interested in how indigenous peoples might maintain or rediscover ancestral identities.”

—David W. Adams, author of Education for Extinction: American Indians and the Boarding School Experience, 1875–1928 and Three Roads to Magdalena: Coming of Age in a Southwest Borderland, 1890–1990

“In engaging and readable prose, Farina King has produced a compelling autoethnography wherein she introduces readers to the concept of the Earth Memory Compass in order to get academics and laypeople alike to rethink the history of twentieth-century Diné educational experiences. In the process, she helps readers think about land, knowledge, and collective identity creation in ways that will help subsequent generations of scholars forge new work.”

—Erika Bsumek, author of Indian-Made: Navajo Culture in the Marketplace, 1868–1940

Critical to this story is how inextricably Indigenous education and experience is intertwined with American dynamics of power and history. As environmental catastrophes and struggles over resources sever the connections among peoplehood, land, and water, Kings book holds out hope that the teachings, guidance, and knowledge of an earth memory compass still have the power to bring the people and the earth together.

Published in Cooperation with the William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies, Southern Methodist University

About the Author

Farina King is assistant professor of history and affiliate of the Cherokee and Indigenous Studies Department at Northeastern State University, Tahlequah, Oklahoma.

Information provided by: https://kansaspress.ku.edu/978-0-7006-2691-5.html

I’m Not Gonna Die in This Damn Place

Congratulations to Juan Coronado, SOHA Co-President, for his recent book publication! His book, I’m Not Gonna Die in This Damn Place: Manliness, Identity, and Survival of the Mexican American Vietnam Prisoners of War (Latinos in the United States), was officially published by Michigan State University in March 2018. Learn more about the book and order your copy at http://msupress.org/books/book/?id=50-1D0446B#.WwSzKO4vzIV.

Check out the positive review of the book in Publishers Weekly. Others have also praised his work that features oral histories of Mexican American POWs and Chicano Vietnam War experiences and stories:

From the start, and by design, the story of America’s Vietnam prisoners of war was disciplined into an official version. By focusing attention on the Mexican American Vietnam POWs, Juan David Coronado not only identifies how their shared cultural heritage affected their lives before, during, and after captivity, but also shows us just how diverse even a small group of prisoners could actually be. A welcome contribution to our understanding of American POW history. –Craig Howes, Director, Center for Biographical Research, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, and author, Voices of the Vietnam POWs: Witnesses to Their Fight

Juan David Coronado has written a superb and important examination of Chicano prisoners of war in Vietnam; the firstaccount experiences reflected in the work add to this enlightening academic read.

–Charley Trujillo, author of Dogs from Illusion, American Book Award winner for Soldados, and codirector of the companion document

BOOK INFORMATION:

Michigan State University Press Paperback

$29.95 USD ISBN: 9781611862720

eBook$23.95 USD

ISBN: 9781609175542

 

Chiriaco Summit Author

SOHA’s Dr. Mary Contini Gordon was recently a part of Calabasas Author’s Night. Please see the article posted on the station’s site below:

“Business and Innovation Leader, Speaker, Writer/Researcher and Author Dr. Mary Contini Gordon is a meticulous researcher with years of examining organizational issues in the public and private sectors. She was the executive director of the Hughes Institute for Professional Development and oversaw professional and executive development across all five Hughes Companies. After retiring at the end of 2008, she became the facilitator for the Arizona Technology Council’s CEO Network in Tucson, mostly small companies, some family businesses.

Her latest book, “Chiriaco Summit, Built by Love in the Desert“: “Wine was free, but we had to pay for water.”

Joe Chiriaco and his thirteen siblings heard this from their Italian immigrant father as he recounted his ocean journey to America. In the face of limited water and rudimentary dirt roads, Joe and his Norwegian wife, Ruth Bergseid, founded Chiriaco Summit in the 1930s, a desert travel oasis on today’s Interstate 10 between Phoenix and Los Angeles, promising to serve the world on wheels.

The twenty-four-seven challenges are lightened with the courtship of two feisty lovers, the frolicking of youngsters in the desert, more loves, and the juxtaposition of some very imposing personalities, including those of Joe Chiriaco and General Patton.

After moving through new aqueducts and highways, military camps, societal upheavals, and a welcome new set of hard-working immigrants, the twenty-first century brings provisions for electric cars, modern aircraft, and ATV facilities outside Joshua Tree National Park from whence the first Summit waters flowed.

Dr. Gordon is dedicated to telling the stories of those who may not be well known, but contribute mightily to the fabric of this country.”

Tune in to CTV3 to watch this interview or
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