Intimate Obscurity: American Indian Women in Arizona Households and Histories, 1854-1935
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
EmbargoEmbargo: Release after 4/8/2012
AbstractIn three microhistories, this narrative reconstructs Indian women's engagement with imperial regimes and raises questions about power and agency in a territorial borderland. Exhaustive research in archives not previously considered valuable sources of Native history yielded census data, legal transcripts, and probate records that revealed Native women's participation in the formation of Arizona's legal culture--an overlapping network of federal, state, and tribal jurisdictions that fostered racial ambiguity and cloaked inter-racial intimacy. One of the strengths of this work is that it is based in sources few others have bothered to consider closely.Heavily steeped in the work of third-world and critical legal scholars who see the exploitation of Indigenous women's bodies as a fundamental component of American conquest, Intimate Obscurity puts Native women at the center of Arizona and borderlands historiography. Obscured by chroniclers who continue to celebrate the region's pioneer past, and yet intimately tied to the territory's founding fathers, the women in this study are exceptional because they made their cases known in unsympathetic courts and exemplary because they shared the same economic and sexual vulnerabilities that Native women continue to face today.
Degree ProgramGraduate College