tv Chicano History CSPAN April 10, 2016 9:00am-10:01am EDT
>> interested in american history tv? c-span.org/bsite, history. american artifacts. ewind, lecturesw and more. on american history tv, author and ethics studies ejano talksaivd mont about his research chronicling texas chiquano history. he discusses the relationship between anglo-americans and mexican-americans, the brown berets and henry gonzalez's disapproval of the chiquano
movement. it is part of a daylong conference at the university of california santa barbara. >> it is my privilege to introduce my speaker for the conference. it has the distinction of having presented in all of the three south castro memorial conferences. we should give him a special badge for that. mr. montejano, it is an honor to have it for our key speaker. he is professor of ethnic studies at uc berkeley he has also chair the center for research on social change. prior to teaching at berkeley, was an associate professor at the university of test in austin. his major areas of research have been comparative history, race
and relations. he has published widely in journals and books. his books on the chicano movement include a local history of the chicano movement, which also won numerous awards. that book was followed by another book called "ponchos journal. both of these books were" published by the university of texas press. he has received numerous
distinguished fellowships, including a national endowment for the humanities, fellowship for the advanced studies of -- his presentation today is on the past and present of the chicano movement, some reflections and questions. it is my honor to welcome dr. david montejano. [applause] dr. montejano: thank you. how do i turn this on? somebody? sorry.
>> it's coming on. there you go. dr. montejano: you can tell i am an og, because i am not technology we -- not technologically savvy. my smartphone is smarter than me. this is quite an honor. my charge, as i understood it, initially, was to sort of sketch out the landscape and maybe suggest some future directions. but the other thing was to reassure you that, this wide of the prolific record of publications, the there is
areas to research. he has not taken all of the option out of the room yet. and light of the early morning presentation, i don't think we have to worry. i was so excited to hit the presenter this morning. i would like to give a round of applause for the panel. [applause] so what i want to do today's present some reflections based on my research on the chicano movement and to invite you to consider some points for future investigation. initially, i was going to point out what i thought were strengths and weaknesses. i'm not going to do that. i decided the best way to proceed would be to use my own experience, to suggest is learned to suggest what the in other words, an organic explanation rather than a literal one,, something that breaks down the partition between survival and the economy
-- survival and the academy and knowledge production. so this will be somewhat autobiographical, but i think it is also reflective of the chicano generation, of that generation of scholars. we are, in a sense, products. those in my generation were participants and beneficiaries. many of us went on to graduate scale -- go school processing because of the movement. we wanted to recover our history or learn what was going on around us. there was agency in our part, but there was also a structure of opportunity. that is one of the point to want to make in my presentation. we should study that interaction between agency and structure.
oftentimes, we just rely totally on agency and forget about structure. i think i am an ideal candidate for this kind of task. when many of you look at me, i am always introduced as having a distinguished record, having several books. you say, my god, you know, there has been a smooth ride. it is not anything like that at all. as an undergraduate at the university of texas in austin, in the late 60's, i was very active in various political movements. the farmworkers -- the farmworkers strike in california and texas, the black civil rights movement, the antiwar movement, and the council culture movement.
that's why i ended up going into sociology. this is in the early 1970's. i didn't realize that i had been the subject of family conversation later and my aunt asked where david was because i had been in jail. and my and said [speaking in spanish] [applause] [laughter] so, yes, i was very involved with the movement. so when it came time to choose a dissertation topic, it was the chicano movement, and particular the brown berets. i thought the berets had the key to political consciousness. these are guys from the barrio. many of them high school dropouts, some of them heroin
addicts. here they were becoming politicized, joining an organization, becoming involved in various events and so forth. so my thing was, if i could discover the key to that lyrical consciousness, then perhaps that phenomenon could be duplicated. that's what i wanted to do. this is from la causa 1970. this portrayed my thesis, the vato loco yesterday, now the brown beret, disciplined, proud, so forth. imagine instead what i found out when i got into the field, into the so-called field in southwestern san antonio. what i found was a disintegrating organization.
this was 1974, 1975. the disintegration reflected what was going on largely in the chicano movement. the berets were falling apart and so was my dissertation topic. [laughter] this is what i found. so the tecatos who had given up heroine while they were in the berets had returned to it and had taken several berets with them. at the same time that i am having problems with what am i going to do with this dissertation topic, i was hired at the university of california berkeley as an acting assistant professor and given a timeline to finish my dissertation. so you can imagine -- i will come back to what happened later because i am at berkeley now.
fortunately, about this time that i am trying to deal with this dissertation, i met paul taylor. paul taylor was a labor historian. he did most of his publishing in the 1930's and 1940's. i was surprised he was still alive. he was in the same building that i was in berkeley. he had already suffered a stroke. he had his eyelids taped to his forehead. i told him i was familiar with his work. he immediately tested me. name my book and who published it in what year? i said "american mexican frontier" university press, 1930, whatever. that opened up the doors and we start a talking. then he said that the futures serve bankrupt library. so i started going to the
library and, my god, i was hooked. here were interviews inducted in the 1930's. i focused on people of all stripes, mainly politicians and ranchers, farmers, of course growers and so forth. i was shocked. i was shocked because here were -- i mean, here were and low texans talking about mexicans with no holds barred. a language i had not heard. and also learning about to the imposition of labor controls, again, another part of history that i did not know. so i'm getting involved in the interviews, my historical introduction to the historical chapter kept growing and growing. eventually i said, that is going to be the dissertation. so i guess that leads to one lesson i learned right away, that be conscious of your audience. ok? no, excuse me, actually, the lesson that comes before being conscious of my audience, and
that is be sure you have an ending to your inquiry. [laughter] ok? be sure you have an ending you can live with. don't start spending years on something and then not know how to wrap it up. and part, that was because i was conscious of my audience. that was the reflection i had from this. i realized that come if i wrote at the time -- you had to understand that we had very little literature of the time -- if i wrote a book on the berets at that time, it could easily have been misinterpreted and generalized to apply to all latino youth. so i was conscious of my audience. so the history that i was learning about anglos in mexicans in the making of texas, this was a book that anglos -- that i wanted and close to read. i didn't want it to be dismissed. i said this is a texas history
about interactions between two people. and also given the fact that most of my documentation came from anglos, you know, the voices and so forth, angle had to be in there. so here i was countering the triumphalist literature. i made sure that anglos and makes offense -- and was in mexicans in the making of texas. the corollary to that is to stem the political implementation -- political implication. i became aware reading the world of my grandparents and that my parents european in texas. that led me to a humbling inside. the keys -- because we chicano youth placed a lot of blame on our elders for what we thought was passively. -- passivity. we were[speaking spanish]
you know, how could you take this bs in this type of segregation? that's because we didn't have the history and did not understand the pressure of oppression that they had to continue with. in fact, we start looking at that structure, it was because of changes in that structure that we could even say that we had a coupon of movement. -- a chicano movement. the college students at the time, we were ahead of that change and structure. we were evidence that there were leaks in that structure. and here we were, now, i mean, the structure had since allowed us to exist and now here we were involved in contesting the structure that we were surrounded by. it was very interesting argument in one of the examples of that
leak, one of the weeks. i realized that the catholic school system that developed alongside the public school structure was very important. mario and i are both products of the catholic schools. and given the time that we lived in, that probably was the only way out of the kind of underfunded barrio education that we would have had otherwise. looking at structure to understand and trying to connect the dots, right. so understanding the -- i start with the fall of the alamo and
come up to 1986. and i ended with the notices on the challenges to jim crow structure, both by two chicano movement organizations. here's a map. i didn't reproduce it. this is just an illustration. this is a map that comes up later, and when of the later chapters. what those trying ozark are voting rights lawsuits filed by voters in 1984 -- in 19741975. this is happening. these are lawsuits being launched by chicano movement organizations.
can you imagine a regional map with all the triangles representing the lawsuits that we filed during that time? it would be very precedent. i was listening to 10 crews talking about how we have to bomb isis. if we did that, it would be our own carpet bombing. but there is something else and that map -- in this map. each triangle represents a community history. there is a narrative under each triangle, folks, a narrative
that has not yet been captured. the reason i can say that is because, if you understand the organizing strategy, they didn't just show up. they went into communities, gathered the leaders of the local community, the meter -- the leaders of the clergy, small business people, so forth, bring them together and say this is what we know by a committee. this is what we want to do, but we need places. we need plaintiffs. we need plaintiffs. many turn them down. in terms of what happened as a result of these lawsuits, we have anecdotal evidence kind of stuff. that is all we have. this right here is [indiscernible] out of fort bend county, we have
[indiscernible] who was elected to the house of representatives in texas and then becomes a major leader of the mujeres of la raza. that is just one story. i don't know all the other stories here, you know? can you imagine what we have here is the basis than, i think it begs for some kind of comparative method, you know. and of course, the comparative method is still the foundation. even one we are doing a single case study, you should be thinking comparatively. examples that i can give you, like in anglos in mexicans, restaurant to understand what it was like in the southwest right after the war, whether we were occupied militarily.
how do we understand that? i started reading u.s. policy briefs on japan, under occupation, right after world war ii. and this is where the notion of a piece searcher comes from. i don't talk about japan in and was in mexicans, but you are thinking comparatively. liberal -- labor oppression or labor control, this comes from reading have the germany lead treated their peasants and workers in the late 19th century. even though we are doing acing ok study, we should be thinking comparatively. this is stuff that does not come at imprint in a book, but we are thinking about it. anyway, anglos in mexicans came out in 1987. it took me another 10 years or so before i moved to the movement prompts. wasn't really sure if it was not to come out.
what really should me out of that kind of complacency were the [indiscernible] they really gave me age-old. when i saw the papers, i thought i've got to do this. he was an avowed enemy of this kind of movement. we can talk later about why that was the case. but it doesn't make any difference right now. what happened here was -- the collection to the university of texas in austin, in one box labored "the chicano movement." when i opened that box, my god,
it was a treasure trove. star dancing. [laughter] even though what i found was all negative for my mean, we talking about he had police photos of participants, police photos of the house where we were meeting, where i had been. he had police photos of people i had interviewed. he had confidential memoranda. he had letters from clergy who were opposed to the chicano movement. i'm reading this, father, how could you? you were in the meetings with us. and here he was writing confidential reports.
all of it was there. i thought this was the time to dive back into it. here are some of the lead photos. this is the universided the la comunidcad. this is a freedom school. there were a lot of freedom schools throughout the south. this is a chicano freedom school. here is another police photo of the interior third he had police photos of participants in the movement who were arrested. he had several. i like that face of defiance for it there. i like this one, too. [laughter] but i used the photos of the
women to make a point about the emergence of the chicano movement. the photos, folks, visuals are so important, god, so important. i guess the insight here on the lesson i learned is that, when you're looking for relevant archives, don't forget the opposition. do not forget the opposition. they can provide the basis for attention in your narrative. the policing agencies, they write reports and have secretaries and so forth. they did a much better job at the documenting the movement than the policed. we were the policed. they were policing us. if you want to read and adjusting history of the marcha, the history of the braves, read the police reports. yes, definitely, look at
oppositional archives. they are very important. moving on to give out the dusty code -- to quixote soldiers, it's a history of the movement. and there is a companion journal of me hanging out with the guys. there were two different voices into different methods involved. in any case, the language that i have used in anglos and mexicans i found was insufficient when i was at the ground level. anglos and mexicans covered 150 years of a vast swath of land in
texas. and now here in quixote soldiers, it is one community. it was not only inadequate to capture those kind of dynamics at the neighborhood level, now i was dealing with matters of self-identity. the course of the writ themselves into greater degradations of poverty. the poor choose finer distinctions among themselves and the youth are organized by neighborhood. it was natural that the berets, working with the berets, to be drawn to the gang literature. i have to take gang identities and not dismiss it as ecological or in some other way.
gang studies, the social work literature, all of those ended up coming relevant for understanding the world that the berets grew up in. given the prominence of gangs and chicano literature, it made it tied to the chicano movement more. in essence, this is a cartoon i found in the box. [speaking spanish] then of course, at the end, where is the pride? where's the anger? where's the shame, people? that's one of the jams that i found in the box. i found a masters thesis in getting a masters in social work. amazing. the math didn't come out too
well here. but in any case, being able to visualize these gangs, these gang affiliations was really important. i guess what i am saying is that, working on the ground level, me accommodating various identities. and gender was important, class. i also got into the chicano movement because i saw class also playing a role there. what happened here? i lost my -- i don't know what happened here. thank you. thank you, man.
this diagram, i will spare you the wall speakers, but they come from juvenile arrest statistics maintained by the police department. i was able to draw some conclusions from it. that i guess what i'm saying is that there are sources out there that we have not yet cap -- tapped. we have not really focused on the opposition are on the structure of the segregation structure that we are dealing with erin this is a diet -- we are dealing with. this is a diagram. it shows your class
differentiation. the brown berets, batos locos. regardless of which tact, they exercised their identity. this illustrates again the influence of class and gender. really, what i get away from, what i want to say in terms of an insight is doodling is very important. [laughter] doodling, folks. diagramming the relationships between the various people or organizations, for whatever you consider important -- it's very important now. this is one diagram that didn't make it into print. but it's a way to clarify what the argument is. i carry around an analytical framework in my head. it is split up into individual organizations and communities. individual being the base. organization being the intermediate.
from a much longer time frame, within we can talk about the success as well. and in trying to do that, in a sense, i was responding to those that said that the movement ended in 1975. >> [indiscernible] dr. montejano: a second movement generation activists without the revolutionary rhetoric that had characterized our earlier organizations. these were organizations that were still dedicated to empowering marginalized communities, but not necessarily talking about azlan.
frame from a much longer time frame, i think we can talk about the successes of the movement as well as its favors. in trying to do that i coined th e term second-generation movement of organization. i was responding to those that said the movement ended in 1975. second generation movement organization. a second-generation movement organization, which i described as an organization formed by a movement after this but without the nationalist or revolutionary rhetoric that had characterized a lot of our organizations. these are organizations that were still committed to ies buting communites, not necessarily talking about the chicano nation.
we have several. i think southwest voter is one. this is another one. organized by ernie cortez. cortez went to the high school i went to. you have a high school set up in the jim crow structure. and then these folks go to the leadership positions and so forth. ernie ends up creating communities organize for public service. this is one of the conferences. he can see it again. money versus people. who do you want? cops is advocating obviously that you put money.
don't build -- alamo because you want a football team. invest in education, drainage, parks. but is -- but what is also important about this second generation movement organization is the person speaking at the podium. cops had, of the six presidents they'd have had them a five of them have been women. it was a vehicle for women to emerge as spokespeople, as leaders, and as candidates for public office. very important. i want to turn finally to santo's journal. which is based on my original theme of hanging out with the guys.
i could not use photographs. i wanted to keep their anonymity. so i recruited an artist to do illustrations for the book. so this is one of his illustrations. this is from a photograph. it was an interesting collaboration between the artist and myself. i learned that he is not a graphic artist when i wanted him to be a graphic artist. i'd say, no, that is not the way it looks. you have to do this. but here are the guys. this is also from a 40 graph -- a photograph of the guys protesting in front of the consulate on the anniversary of
the massacre. but again, showing the political nature of the berets, right? here is the nonpolitical nature of the berets at a meeting -- you can't see too well here, but they discovered, well, one of the guys that was packing had his gun. and another grade, -- and another bur a had a gun. and there was a can. they started venting who had -- they started betting who could hit the can. and that's me over there. this is drawn from interpretation. we have a video, a projector. i had to return something. i coudln't just take. they wanted to be educated. they wanted lessons in history.
this is at a meeting. again, well, the title is "what we do to live. " this is a beret truck. this was a toilet, a sink,e verything. that's the material i had to deal with. now you see why i didn't write it up the first time. i was having a difficult. now getting backt to berkeley. the subtitle is "you better hurry up and finish.
-- finish." i said, you got to get the floor right,. [laughter] i told him to brin in . this is a poster that his own dad drew. there are interesting things int he illustration. that's the beginning. i don't like to leave things unsettled. i like to have resolution. and i have resolution in the end. this is towards the end when i
discovered, i'm at stanford, and i realized that lowenthal had published in 1955, literature of the image of man. i'm reading through what he wrote. if i had known this, i would have had some communication with him. but i ended up using his language. he talks about what quixote represented. sancho, because i'm the scribe
reflection. make sure you picka project that has an ending you can live with. make sure you know your audience. pay attention to structure as well as to agency. understand the opposition and their interests. gather their reports from other photographs and so forth. the comparative method essential for composing and the nation, even when only engaged in a civil case study. part of the important background thinking that never appears in print is doodling and diagramming the relationships
between people, organizations and so forth. then acknowledged failures as well as successes. acknowledge the good and the bad. acknowledge complexity. and then finally come understand that the university has certain expectations and deadlines regarding research and publications, and you have to deal with that. thank you. [applause] >> we have about 10 minutes or so. let's put it up for questions for david montejano. you had managed to access the fbi records. i did as well. a lot of it is censored. it is interesting that a letter
to con history is actually -- a lot of chicano history is available as the result of the institutions that were oppressive to the community, like the fbi and so forth. dr. montejano: they are there. you have to ask for the repeatedly. it takes time. it's it may several years to get the beret records. and then when you get them, they will be in complete. much of it will be redacted. one document i got from the fbi about the berets was a page that was redacted. it was the austin membership for the brown berets. but it was all redacted. however, by noting how much was redacted, you can tell how many members were in the organization.
[laughter] i mean, you can squeeze out a lot of things even from a redacted memo. >> some other questions -- i would like to acknowledge the presence here are one of the early, early major academics in terms of chicano studies in the formation of things like the national chicano studies association and longtime faculty member at uc berkeley. let's give a nice round of applause to mario barrera. [applause] ok, so questions, comments on the keynote address. >> thank you for that wonderful talk. i wonder if you could answer questions from the previous panel. what do think about the
[indiscernible] i wondered if you could expand on the appendix, talking about the limits of the movement. dr. montejano: that's another talk. of course, there is continuity. the idea of a second-generation movement organization is interesting. we can look at several environmental justice organizations, for example, that come out of the chicano movement. some labor organizing comes out of the labor -- that you cannot movement -- comes out of the chicano movement. those that say the movement ended at a certain time does not
hold any water. you saw the map. but goes up to 1984. i think the continuity is there. now you join the connections between the post-world war ii generation of mexican american generation, the chicano generation, i think you guys have in doing a great job of that. obviously, there is continuity there. you talk about georgia sanchez and so forth, americo p aredes. i was on a panel that -- with cynthia orozco and emilio [indiscernible] who had written on various movements. cynthia spoke about the women of liu lector in the 1920's. emilio talked about the mexican-american movement after world war ii. cynthia started first by talking
about how the lulac founders were criticizing the leadership that they had because they were all in the arms of the political bosses. then emilio followed and noted that those world war ii veterans were criticizing the very people that cynthia had lauded up as leaders. they were criticizing the -- the world war ii vets were criticizing the lulac leadership. then here i come, the chicanos, they are criticizing emilio's points. it is interesting that we might talk about this continuity ourselves. we might say you guys haven't done anything, but clearly there is continuity.
i just thought it was ironic that it's generation was criticizing -- that each generation was criticizing the previous generation for what it hadn't done. >> there's another connection. o linsky influences were there in the form of [indiscernible] then we pick it up with not only cops, but here in the l.a. area in the late 1970's, you have organizations and father rivares. >> i would say, out of [indiscernible] went beyond a linsky and had more long-term goals and i think was influenced by
[indiscernible] and the woman that led the women of east l.a., they also moved on to environmentalism and historical chicano studies. there are a number of rural leaders. voter registration. dr. montejano: i want to add something i neglected to mention. in terms of what are considered to be understudied.
to me, the rule is los angeles. i know mario's already taking bites out of the offense, but there's still a lot of elephant left, folks. [laughter] >> we had time for a quick question or comments. >> i love this because [indiscernible] brings literature in. on the question of continuity -- so you are. see the break between spanish and indigenous during the movement? there is wonderful similarity of
art and all of that. dr. montejano: i wasn't seeing it as anti-spanish. i was looking for a metaphor. >> [indiscernible] and you went beyond that. dr. montejano: i was looking for a metaphor that would bridge anglos and mexicans. i thought i found it in quixote. >> let's give david montejano another round of applause. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] you are home watching american history tv, 48 hours of programming of american history every weekend on c-span 3. follow us on twitter for information on our schedule and
keep up with the latest history news. tells both the story of the fact that the manuscript of this national treasure is not while we thought while also trying to chronologically considering what was madison encountering at the time. keeping those two narratives straight was quite tricky. >> tonight, boston college law school professor discusses her hand," that took a critical notes at the notes james madison wrote. took notes on sheets of paper. he folded their sheets in half. then at some point he sewed all these little pieces of paper together into a manuscript. one of the things you notice when you are down there was that the last quarter of the manuscript, the holes he had
sewn, did not match with the earlier ones. this confirmed my suspicion that the end of the manuscript had been written later. but you cannot see that and the microfilm. it was wonderful to see that in person. >> sunday night at 8:00 on c-span's "q&a." weekend on the presidency, california state university professor tyler perry talks about the 12 american presidents who owned slaves. here's a preview. lavery permeated all of the 13 colonies, the southern soil, climate and agricultural development saw the region dominate the oppression of african peoples and expand the institution of slavery by the mid-1700s. the northst slaves in toiled on smaller farms, southern slaves cultivated the cash crops that made white men
wretch. exploiting their labor on tobacco and rice farms and later the cotton plantations that stretched from the upper south to east texas alongside the sugar plantations of louisiana. investment in slaves determined social status and one's claim to ess rested on their ownership of people. 12 united states presidents own slaves, eight of them in office. symbols of an enslaved past dominate landscapes and symbols throughout america. we find slaveowners on currency. statues on universities. and celebrate individuals who were literally involved in human trafficking. terminology matters in this context. horrent as i as ab t, seems easier for most people to digest. many tend to excuse the institution or perhaps overlook it as a black eye of american
history that many prefer to forget but in using the modern phrase "human trafficking," it jefferson, george washington and others into a more uncomfortable historical memory. > you can watch the entire lecture on the presidency here on american history tv on c-span 3. each week leading up to the 2016 election american history tv brings you archival coverage of past presidential races. from the 1992 campaign, jerry brown answering questions from the new york post editorial board. just days ahead of the new york primary. the former california governor won contest in vermont and connecticut heading into new york and needed another victory to continue momentum against bill clinton. jerry brown finished third in new york