Welcome to another installment of the Borderlands History Interview Project. We have been away too long, but we’ve been thinking about you! Today, we are offering a fantastic interview with Dr. Monica Perales, Associate Professor at the University of Houston. She received her B.A. and M.A. from the University of Texas at El Paso, and went on to complete her Ph.D. in history at Stanford University. She is also the author of Smeltertown: Making and Remembering a Southwest Border Community and the forthcoming article “The ‘New Mexican Way’: The New Mexico Agricultural Extension Agency, Hispanas, and Making a Regional Cuisine,” in Meredith Abarca and Consuelo Salas, eds., Latinas/os’ Invisible and Visible Presences in the Food Systems: Changing How We Eat and Who We Are.
Monthly Archives: October 2015
In today’s guest post, we present a book review by Stephen Kostes on borders and frontiers in the UK. Stephen is a Stony Brook History M.A. recipient (2015) and is interested in the British empire’s use of colonial troops and how these soldiers eventually created their own martial borderland culture. He is contemplating a dissertation that would study this concept of martial borderlands as they existed in the 18th and 19th century.
Alister Farquhar Matheson, Scotland’s Northwest Frontier: A Forgotten British Borderland. Matador Press, 2014.
Scotland’s Northwest Frontier is a massive but accessible work that traces the history of Scotland from roughly 1,000 C.E. to the twentieth century. It focuses specifically on the Northwest frontier and analyzes the roles of both the Hebrides and Highlands in shaping the cultural and political landscape of Scotland.
The book is split into four major segments, each containing several chapters that chronologically trace the development of Scotland. The first segment gives the reader a virtual tour of the landscape of the Highlands. Though Matheson lists the names of various Scottish territories, he makes the mistake of never giving the reader a map, making it difficult for someone unfamiliar with Scotland to keep track of every territory. The first segment is by far the shortest, and is more of an extended introduction that introduces the book’s core themes. The main one is how the Northwest frontier helped shape, divide, and unite different Scottish clans from the medieval to the modern era. Secondary is the frontier’s role in cross country trade, and the eventual destruction of the Highland way of life.