In “Sexual Violence in the Politics of Conquest’, Castaneda explores the sexual crimes against Amerindian women during the Spanish conquest of Alta California. The soldiers accompanying the missionaries on the settlement raped and violated the native women openly. There were many incidents before rules were set to govern the matter, but even after the rapes continued to occur. One court case recorded in 1773 indicates that there was no intention to grant justice to the victims. The natives took matters into their own hands and formed forces to seek their own justice (similar to Chicano activist groups that seek reform for discrimination), but to no avail. Castaneda goes on to explain that the actions of the soldiers were not farfetched from practices of Western civilization (27-28). Because these dark crimes were normal for the dominant culture, they were automatically imposed on the natives, who were supposed to accept this without resistance. This is similar to Mexican Americans during the Chicano movement, who were not given equal... [continues]
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