The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003 Page: 364
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
does have a mystique about it that carries over into the research and
writing of its many sub-fields.
Responsible for this accomplishment has been the hard work of histori-
ans dedicated to the reconstruction of a history once argued to have been
nonexistent. In pursing their goal, these scholars have not confined them-
selves to any specific approach. Most Tejano scholars remain faithful to
the classic tradition of historical research and narrative writing; they firmly
believe in archival research as opposed to theory. Many of these estab-
lished Tejano historians feel ill-at-ease discussing "paradigm shifts," "post-
modernism," "modernization theory," or "world systems analysis" and
instead take pride in the generally accepted tenet that one of Tejano
scholarship's most noted traits is effective communication. While "tradi-
tionalists" prefer avoiding vogues that hatch a new language or formulate
unconventional avenues for examining historical subjects, they are
nonetheless tolerant of innovative outlooks, methodologies, and insights.
Indeed, the study of Tejanos features the contributions of historians
inclined to use the "unconventional" to probe their sources. The mono-
graphs of David Montejano, Emma P6rez, and Neil Foley, for instance,
have been acclaimed for their groundbreaking inquiries and their suc-
cess in clarifying specific aspects of the Tejano experience. This applica-
tion of perspectives from related disciplines will most certainly become a
fixture of Tejano history in coming years. A mixture of the old and the
new, no doubt, will keep Tejano history in step with parallel currents
unfolding in mainstream Texas history.
Specialists from related social science disciplines as well as students of
the arts and literature have contributed to the appreciation of contem-
porary multi-cultural society. These writers have introduced new subjects
to investigate and prompted re-analyses of old assumptions in Texas his-
tory. Their works have also provided context to the phenomenon of a
rapidly growing Hispanic population. They have given a "presence" to
Mexican Americans in Texas that can no longer be dismissed by schol-
ars, government agencies, or the larger society.
The bibliography on Tejano history today, therefore, is lengthy. Over
the past thirty years, scholars have broadened the arena of study to
embrace new spaces and places as well as topics and themes. They have
employed methodologies and imaginative approaches not anticipated by
those who blazed the field. During that span of time, also, early premises
have been corrected, refined, or overturned. A continued and indeed an
expanded interest is to be expected. Mirroring demographic trends-
according to some estimates, Mexican Americans will soon constitute half
of the population of the Lone Star State-Tejano history may soon rede-
fine the way all Texans view their past.
Here’s what’s next.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003, periodical, 2003; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/m1/432/: accessed June 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.