BROTHERS OF LIGHT, BROTHERS OF BLOOD
The Penitentes of the Southwest
By Marta Weigle
Voted one of the 100 Best New Mexico Books.
New Foreword by the Author. Index and Bibliography
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“Brothers of Light, Brothers of Blood: The Penitentes of the Southwest” is the first book-length, fully documented study since Dorothy Woodward’s 1935 Yale University dissertation. Using newly available sources and contemporary materials from the late 1960s and early 1970s, Marta Weigle shows the Brotherhood’s substantial contributions--through acts of charity, supervision of wakes and funerals, and religious observances--to community survival and welfare in northern New Mexico and southern Colorado through the mid-twentieth century. Brothers adapted orthodox forms of Roman Catholic worship into vital, significant religious and social expressions that consecrated and confirmed communal ties and provided setting for personal religious experience. Weigle explores the early history of the Brotherhood, theories about its origins and its ongoing relationship to historical and ecclesiastical developments in New Mexico. Her detailed study of the Brothers’ membership, organization, activities, and religious rituals is an invaluable resource for students of religious and Southwest history and will also fascinate the general reader.
On April 24, 1976, Marta Weigle received an Award of Honor from the Cultural Properties Review Committee, State of New Mexico, for “Brothers of Light, Brothers of Blood: The Penitentes of the Southwest.” Later that year the book was awarded Honorable Mention in the annual University of Chicago Folklore Prize competition.
Marta Weigle has taught anthropology, English, and American studies at the University of New Mexico since 1972. Currently a University Regents Professor in the Anthropology Department, she has chaired that department and the Department of American Studies. Originally published in 1976, “Brothers of Light, Brothers of Blood: The Penitentes of the Southwest” and its companion “A Penitente Bibliography” are based on doctoral and subsequent research that began in the late 1960s and are now a part of the Southwest Heritage Series from Sunstone Press. Among Weigle’s many books on the Southwest are the co-authored “The Lore of New Mexico” (1988, 2003) and the co-edited “Hispano Folklife of New Mexico” (1978), “Hispanic Arts and Ethnohistory in the Southwest” (1983), and “Spanish New Mexico” (1996). In 2005 she received the inaugural State Historian’s Award for Excellence in New Mexico Heritage Scholarship from the Cultural Properties Review Committee and the State Historic Preservation Division, Department of Cultural Affairs.
Inside This Book
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