Autohistoria: Traversing through Time and Space to Explore Identity, Consciousness, Positionality, and Power
Flores, Belinda Bustos
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How do our own cultural-historical experiences in geographic spaces like the border(s) we occupy shape our identities, consciousness, positionality, and power? Using the autohistoria-teoria methodology, the intent of this manuscript is to explore my paternal grandmother's family, Los Martínez’ cultural historical experiences as descendants of conquistadores, who eventually lived along the Rio Grande-Río Bravo del Norte, which is now the Texas–Mexico border. Archival data, including birth, marriage, and death certificates, land grants, maps, border crossing documents, published books, and family oral stories were used to establish a timeline and develop a narrative that spans across time and geographic zones that were originally indigenous, colonized by Spain, became México, and for some of these territories eventually became part of the United States. I will share Los Martínez’ origins that begin in the Kingdom of the Navarre, their story as conquistadores and settlers in northern México and Texas geographic areas that were part of Nuevo España. The overarching theme I plan to capture is the fluidity of borders as figured worlds, but I also plan to highlight the formation of hybrid identities, consciousness, positionality, and power within the spaces/figured worlds that we occupy as both colonizer and colonized.