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Critical Dialogues in Latinx StudiesA Reader$
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Ana Y. Ramos-Zayas and Mérida M. Rúa

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781479805198

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479805198.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 27 June 2022

Capturing the Church Familia

Capturing the Church Familia

Scriptural Documents and Photographs on the Agricultural Labor Circuit

(p.457) 34 Capturing the Church Familia
Critical Dialogues in Latinx Studies

Lloyd Barba

NYU Press

This chapter is set in the context of California’s agricultural empire (1920s–1950s), a time and place noted for the growth and exploitation of its migratory Mexican workforce. In places of extreme unbelonging, such as the socially disintegrating and physically trying conditions of life and labor on the agricultural labor circuit, Mexican Pentecostal farmworkers forged a sense of belonging as evidenced by the scriptural documents and photographs they produced. “Scriptures” in this chapter are taken to mean texts that forge a sense of belonging and orient one towards a larger imagined religious and ethnic community. To better capture the dynamics of this community and the kinship bonds that developed in shared spaces, this chapter offers the term “church familia.” The Mexican Pentecostal movement took shape in the overlapping vertiginous processes of racialization and labor migration in the borderlands, and in doing so carved out a more capacious definition of family.

Keywords:   belonging, borderlands, California, family, farmworkers, Pentecostalism, photography, religion, scriptures

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