Missions, Missionaries, and Native Americans:
Long-Term Processes and Daily Practices

Maria F. Wade


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"A skillful and insightful synthesis of the experience of native peoples living in missions in northern Mexico and Florida that goes beyond a narrative approach. Wade explains why native peoples accepted or rejected missionaries, and how native peoples lived."--Robert H. Jackson, author of Missions and Frontiers of Spanish America

"A volume that will be a valuable addition to the library of all students of the Spanish colonial world. It will serve as a standard reference on the missionary efforts of Spanish colonial North America for decades to come."--Russell K. Skowronek, Santa Clara University

From the 1600s through the 1800s, Spanish missionaries came to America to convert Native Americans. Maria Wade provides in-depth information on their efforts, their varying missionary ambitions, and native peoples' responses to evangelization and conversion efforts.

No other study offers such a broad, comparative approach. By examining the missionary efforts of the Franciscans and Jesuits in Florida, Texas, California, and northern Mexico, Wade brings into sharp contrast the different experiences and outcomes as these two Catholic orders sought to gain a foothold in North America.

Missions, Missionaries, and Native Americans also provides an ethnohistorical and archaeological perspective on the structure and daily activities of early mission life. Of particular interest is the discussion of the similarity between Catholic religious practices and Native American shamanistic practices.

Maria F. Wade, associate professor of anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin, is author of The Native Americans of the Texas Edwards Plateau, 1582-1799.

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"An important contribution to the history of Spanish colonial missions. Highly recommended as an ancillary text on the history of North American missions and as a source of illustrative historical material on a wide variety of current missiological issues."
--Missiology

"This excellent work will appeal to those interested in Native studies, borderlands, the history of Spanish missions, theological and cultural issues involved in missionization, and Native Christianity." "Highly recommended."
--Choice

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