History of Hispanic Catholics in the United States

Project Number: 
Start Date: 
Mon, 01/01/1990
End Date: 
Fri, 01/01/1993

Recognizing that the history of Hispanic Catholics in the United States had long been neglected by scholars, Jay P. Dolan and Mary Ewens, OP, of the Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism at the University of Notre Dame formulated a plan to stimulate academic inquiry into this important subject in 1989. With the assistance of an advisory committee consisting of Allan Figueroa Deck, SJ, Gilberto M. Hinojosa, Michael J. McNally, Moises Sandoval, Anthony M. Stevens-Arroyo, and Olga R. Villa Parra, Dolan and Ewens designed the Notre Dame History of Hispanic Catholics in the U.S. Scholars from disciplines such as history, sociology, and theology were invited to contribute essays on topics including specific national and regional communities of Latino Catholics, popular Catholicism, the role of Latinas in the American Catholic Church, and the history of Hispanic liturgy. Jaime R. Vidal, who succeeded Mary Ewens as associate director of the Cushwa Center in 1990, assumed the role of liaison between these scholars and the Cushwa Center. In 1994, the three volumes resulting from these efforts were published by the University of Notre Dame Press. Also as part of this project, two dissertation fellowships were awarded to younger scholars pursuing research related to the history of Hispanic Catholics in the United States. Timothy M. Matovina, then a doctoral candidate at the Catholic University of America, received a fellowship to assist with the completion of his dissertation, which was published in 1995 by the University of Texas Press as Tejano Religion and Ethnicity: San Antonio, 1821-1860. Maria Eva Valle, a graduate student in sociology at the University of California at San Diego, was awarded a fellowship to assist with the research and writing of her dissertation, "MEChA and the Transformation of Chicano Student Activism: Generational Change, Conflict, and Continuity," which was completed in 1996.