Social Climbers in a Colonial Mexican City: Individual Mobility within the Sistema de Castas in Orizaba, 1777-1791

  title={Social Climbers in a Colonial Mexican City: Individual Mobility within the Sistema de Castas in Orizaba, 1777-1791},
  author={Bruce A. Castleman},
  journal={Colonial Latin American Review},
  pages={229 - 249}
Individuals in colonial Latin American society often deŽ ned themselves according to “race”, according to their degrees of African, European, or Indian ancestry. By the middle of the eighteenth century, these socially constructed categories had become very complex because of the possible permutations over succeeding generations. This situation led the regalist Bourbon state to promulgate a directive establishing eighteen ofŽ cial calidades , the classiŽ cation labels of the well-known sistema… 

Racial and Ethnic Identities in Mexican Statistics

Statistics, generated by censuses, represent knowledge of society and environment used in the government of complex hierarchical societies. In this article we discuss the changing ways that censuses

Without Impediment: Crossing Racial Boundaries in Colonial Mexico

On April 18, 1773, in the town of Teziutlán in the eastern mountains of Mexico, Captain don Raphael Padres participated in the baptism of his godson in the local church. He stood watching as Father

Mestizaje, Córdoba's patria chica: beyond the myth of black disappearance in Argentina

This article examines the ‘disappearance of the black population’ by moving beyond the more traditional explanation of the blanqueamiento (whitening) movement at the end of the nineteenth century. In

Contested Mestizos, Alleged Mulattos: Racial Identity and Caste Hierarchy in Eighteenth Century Pátzcuaro, Mexico*

Late one December afternoon in 1731, Antonio Méndes and his friend Joseph Miguel de Alcaras made their way through the west central Mexican city of Pátzcuaro toward the plaza mayor. Their course took

How Puerto Rico Became White: Boundary Dynamics and Intercensus Racial Reclassification

According to official census results, the Puerto Rican population became significantly whiter in the first half of the twentieth century. Social scientists have long speculated about the source of

Writing by Caste, Counting the Past: Alphabetic Literacy and Age Consciousness in the Colonial Pátzcuaro Region, 1680-1750*

In June of 1739, what might have proven to be a festive early-summer afternoon celebrating the fiesta of Corpus Christi in Pátzcuaro (Mexico), instantaneously veered toward deadly combat when a fight

Introductory Essay: The Power of Images

Debates over the legitimacy of images in the long history of Christianity have never questioned their potency. Indeed, there is no need to proscribe or to promote an inconsequential object. In the


This article examines the long-neglected role of two royal women in the emancipation of servile labour in the empires of Russia and Brazil. It argues that the Grand Duchess Elena Pavlovna of Russia

Collapse and diverse responses in the Gulf lowlands, Mexico

The next generation of historical studies on social mobility: some remarks

In this article I will discuss some promising new research lines in the study of social mobility in past societies, while at the same time placing the articles in this special issue within the



Blacks in Colonial Veracruz: Race, Ethnicity, and Regional Development

Author: Patrick J. Carroll University of Texas Press, Austin, Texas Price: $21.95 Unlike prevailing Latin American historiography which has examined slave revolts (Jose Reis' Slave Rebellion in

Wandering Peoples: Colonialism, Ethnic Spaces, and Ecological Frontiers in Northwestern Mexico, 1700-1850

Wandering Peoples is a chronicle of cultural resiliency, colonial relations, and trespassed frontiers in the borderlands of a changing Spanish empire. Focusing on the native subjects of Sonora in

Marriage Patterns in Mexico City, 1811

raised here, such as women’s legal status and employment, are treated there in greater detail (Arrom, 1977). The author wishes to thank the Joint Committee on Latin American Studies of the American

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The relationship of society to economy and the interplay of economic realities and social ideology remain central concerns in Latin American history. It is for this reason that the recent article by

Blacks in Colonial Veracruz: Race, Ethnicity and Regional Development

Carroll's book is a solid, welcome addition to the scholarly literature on slavery and society during the colonial period and the Wars of Independence in Mexico and Latin America in general. . . .

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The debate over estate and class continues to be one of the more enduring in colonial Latin American history. At its core lies an argument, much older than the terms estate and class, about the

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The question of identity has been one of considerable importance to the study of race in Latin America. Particularly for the multitude of racially mixed offspring produced by miscegenation, it has

Estate and Class in a Colonial City: Oaxaca in 1792

Colonial Latin American societies have generally been presented as systems of estates following forms that were firmly entrenched in Europe before the Spanish conquest in America, an estate being “a

Bureaucrats, Planters, and Workers: The Making of the Tobacco Monopoly in Bourbon Mexico

A government monopoly provides an excellent case study of state-society relationships. This is especially true of the tobacco monopoly in colonial Mexico, whose revenues in the later half of the

Shadows over Anáhuac: An Ecological Interpretation of Crisis and Development in Central Mexico, 1730-1800 . By Arij Ouweneel. (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1996. Pp. 429. Illustrations. Notes. Bibliography. $60.00.)

The book has some troubling aspects. Trexler relies heavily on the work of Gerda Lerner, The Creation of Patriarchy. Written without knowledge of the original languages, evaluated as filled with