Jun Sunseri

Assistant Professor Fellow
2013-2014
Jun Sunseri

In the remote and violent frontier that was Spanish Colonial New Mexico, people of many different heritages worked their way out of captivity to a position of high social status by straddling two worlds. Crafting alliances and regional relationships that extended far beyond their thick adobe fortresses, northern communities such as the Genízaros of Casitas Viejas were ostensibly intended to serve as buffer villages, protecting the larger towns to their south from marauding bands of captive-taking nomads. In his book project, "Moving Targets: Situational Identities along the Raiding Frontier of Colonial New Mexico," Jun Sunseri (Anthropology) argues that northern New Mexico communities used shrewd cross-cultural navigation between indigenous and colonial practices to negotiate strategic alliances with both sides of generations-old conflicts. As a result, diversities in the indigenous culinary and cultural practices endure as cornerstones of modern New Mexican culture and identity.