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Cover of People of Pascua edited by Kathleen Mullen Sands
April 2011
University of Arizona Press

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People of Pascua

Edward H. Spicer
Edited by: 
Kathleen Mullen Sands
Rosamond B. Spicer

Edward H. Spicer was associated for many years with the Yaqui Indians of both Arizona and Sonora and came to be known as the leading scholarly authority on those people. "People of Pascua," the second book he wrote about the Yaquis now in its third edition, presents 16 life histories collected early in his research that tell what it meant to be a Native American and poor in the southwestern United States during the Great Depression.


Editor Kathleen "Kay" Mullen Sands was professor of English at ASU from 1977–2003. Sands passed away in 2018.

Praise for this book

“('People of Pascua') sketches the history and culture of the Tucson area Yaqui and contains case studies of a number of the informants. What constituted ‘Yaquiness’ in Pascua was mainly a common language, a shared historical tradition and an aberrant form of Catholic Christianity laced with Yaqui concepts. This clearly and concisely written book is very important in its own terms both as an early example of the use of life histories in ethnology and as a significant contribution to Yaqui studies.”


“Spicer’s 'People of Pascua' is well written and well edited. Both the editorial preface and the updatings in the end notes are clear and succinct.”

Canadian Journal of Native Studies