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Cycles of Conquest: The Impact of Spain, Mexico, and the United States on Indians of the Southwest, 1533-1960 Paperback – November 1, 1967

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Cycles of Conquest: The Impact of Spain, Mexico, and the United States on Indians of the Southwest, 1533-1960 + Paths of Life: American Indians of the Southwest and Northern Mexico
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 609 pages
  • Publisher: University of Arizona Press (November 1, 1967)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0816500215
  • ISBN-13: 978-0816500215
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.3 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #114,975 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Monumental is the best adjective to describe this book. . . his scholarship is superb . . . we should welcome such a detailed study of a culture before it passes once and for all into the abyss of history." —Bookshelf

"This is an essential book for anyone—historian, anthropologist, or laymen—who is concerned with the history and process of culture change in the Southwest. . . Dr. Spicer has done a magnificent job." —El Palacio


From the Inside Flap


The Overlapping Conquests of North America
The Indians of Northwestern New Spain About 1600
The Rancheria Peoples
The Village Peoples
The Band Peoples
Nonagricultural Bands
Reactions to Conquest

Chapter One - Tarahumaras
Chapter Two - Mayos and Yaquis
Chapter Three - Lower Pimas and Opatas
Chapter Four - Seris
Chapter Five - Upper Pimas
Chapter Six - Eastern Pueblos
Chapter Seven - Western Pueblos
Chapter Eight - Navajos
Chapter Nine - Western Apaches
Chapter Ten - Yumans

Chapter Eleven -The Spanish Program
The Culture of the Conquest
The Frontier Institutions: The Mission Community, The Spanish Town
The Conflicts in Spanish Culture
Bearers of Spanish Culture
Techniques of Culture Transfer
Changes in the Spanish Program
Chapter Twelve -The Mexican Program
Chapter Thirteen -The Anglo -American Program
Historical Bases of Anglo Policy
The Content of Anglo Policy
The Nature of the Contact Communities: The Reservation Community, The Anglo -American Town
The Conflicts in Anglo Culture
Bearers of Anglo Culture

Chapter Fourteen - Political Incorporation
Starting Points: The Native Political Systems, Contrasts with Spanish Government
First Steps in Political Adaptation
Political Resistance and Assimilation in Sonora and Chihuahua
Protection and Dependency in Arizona and New Mexico
Results of Political Incorporation
Chapter Fifteen -Linguistic Unification
The Diffusion of Spanish
The Diffusion of English
The Extinction of Indian Languages
The Persistence and Modification of Indian Languages: Spanish Influences, English Influences, Influences of Literacy Programs, Functional Change
The Influence of Indian Languages on Spanish and English
Chapter Sixteen -Community Reorientation
Changes in the Size and Shape of Indian Communities
The Growth of Alternative Family Patterns
The Individual in Society: Personal Names, Other Trends
Factions and Parties
Chapter Seventeen -Religious Diversification
The Diffusion of Catholicism
The Many Voices of Protestantism
The Rise of New Religions
The Persistence of Indian Religions
Chapter Eighteen -Economic Integration
The Decline of Farming
The Introduction of Livestock
The Growth of Economic Interdependence
Craftwork -The Distinctive Indian Specialization
Corporate Enterprise

Chapter Nineteen -The Processes of Acculturation
The Growth of Common Culture
The Sense of Identity
Chapter Twenty -Enclaves and Cultural Evolution --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By S. Swallow on July 26, 2001
Format: Paperback
I could not rate this book as less than 4 stars simply because of its valuable historical content. However, if I were to rate it on pleasure it would get one star. I look at this text as a reference. Spicer's research is absolutely phenomenal and his detail is intense. It contains the programs of the Spanish, Mexicans, and Anglos to enculturate the Indians of the Southwestern United States. Each colonizing group had different methods of trying to assimilate the Indians and eached varied in their effectiveness. The history is important to view how cultural imperialism was a major factor of the colonization of the American Indians. They were viewed as less than human, as the case seems to always be in cases of racial prejudice. None of the three colonizing groups in this text practiced much cultural tolerance or respect. Their way was right and the Indians would become better by following it. In some cases it was to Christianize them, in other cases to change the organization of their tribes and villages. Reading this book is like reading a dictionary, but I am glad I have it in my collection
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ernest schusky on January 5, 2014
Format: Paperback
Edward Spicer was as wise and humane as he was knowledgeable about the Southwest. Although his speciality was Indians, he knew Spanish (was fluent in the language) and Anglo cultures and how they affected Indians. The book is widely used as a text for courses on the Southwest, but it is also easily read and informative for any reader interested in the Southwest.

Cycles of Conquest begins on a comparative note with an overview of how the Roman Conquest affected Spanish and English cultures, sugggestsing to me that Indian tribes generally have been more persistent in retention of their cultures. The author moves on to a detailed analysis of well known groups in the Southwest: Yaquis (whose language he knew), Mayos, Taramara, both Lower and Upper Pimans, Opatas, Navajos, Apaches, most of the Pueblos, and Yumans. Along the way, he touches on many other lesser known tribes, especially ones in Mexico whose cultures are only briefly described in English.

With Spicer employing his encyclopedic knowledge, the book can be used for a reference work, but it is much more than that. Spicer saw regularities in the many different conquests, some of them determined by the differences between the conquerers (Spanish and Anglo), but also ones that arise from the nature of culture. He will be long remembered for his insights.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By spitfireNM on January 26, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Tracing the indigenous tribes of mezoamerica and the conquest of the southwest by the Spaniards sheds a historical and accurate accounting by Edward Spicer. Details and maps provide an overall picture of the movement of culture that shaped the southwest and south America and the blending of Native American, and European cultures.
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