Smithsonian to host virtual symposium “The Other Slavery” from September 24 to 27 – El Tiempo Latino

PEOPLES. Photo taken by Miguel A. Gandert from Linda Elena, Talpa, NM, 1995. CREDIT: Smithsonian American Art Museum © 1995, Miguel Gandert

Often times, the stories of enslaved indigenous peoples have been absent from the historical narrative. From September 24 to 27, the Smithsonian Institution will present the virtual symposium “The Other Slavery: Stories of Indigenous Slavery from New Spain to the Southwestern United States”Which will explore the hidden stories of enslaved indigenous peoples, focusing on the legacy of Spanish colonization in America and Asia and its impact on what is now the southwestern United States. This program seeks to give a comprehensive first voice to these silenced stories and living legacies.

Experts from various academic disciplines, including indigenous studies, anthropology, and history, will examine little-known stories of forced labor and peonage and the long-term impact of indigenous slavery. Panelists will discuss the legacies of indigenous slavery with indigenous community leaders and cultural workers. The event will explore the different forms and complexity of human servitude that resulted in hybrid cultures, entangled economic practices, and intricate social relationships between the Spanish and indigenous communities.

a reflection article by Andrés Reséndez accompanies the symposium and provides additional context, providing an overview of the complexities of indigenous slavery from its origins to the present. Reséndez is a professor of history at the University of California, Davis, and the author of several books, including The Other Slavery: The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America 2016, which was a finalist for the 2016 National Book Award and recipient of the 2017 Bancroft Award from Columbia University.

HE DREW. In this 1531 drawing (Codex Huexotzingo), eight men and twelve women are given as tribute. | CREDIT: Library of Congress

The symposium is free and all sessions and presentations will be available on demand from September 24 at 12:01 a.m. until 11:59 p.m. on September 27, at the website from the National Museum of the American Indian:

This event is presented by the Smithsonian Latin Center, the National Museum of the American Indian and the National Museum of African American History and Culture in association with the Smithsonian initiative, “Our Shared Future: Recognizing Our Racial Past”.

The “Other Slavery” symposium is made possible, in part, thanks to the support of the One Smithsonian Symposia Fund through the Smithsonian Office of the Assistant Secretary for Museums and Culture. Bank of America is the founding partner of “Our Shared Future: Acknowledging Our Racial Past.”


  • Welcome and opening remarks

Lonnie G. Bunch III, Secretario, Smithsonian

  • First session: “Global and national contexts of indigenous slavery”

Philip J. Deloria, Tiya Miles, Andrés Reséndez, Scott Manning Stevens

  • Second session: “Slavery in the Spanish Empire: the Philippines and the southwestern border”

James F. Brooks, Ramón A. Gutiérrez, Tatiana Seijas, Gabrielle Tayac

  • Third session: “Living cultures: Genízaras Traditions today”

Chavela Trujillo, Delilah Trujillo, Dexter Trujillo, Virgil Trujillo, Patricia Trujillo

  • Cultural presentation: “Living cultures: Genízaras Traditions today”

Inditas del Pueblo de Abiquiú, members of the Genízara community of Abiquiú, New Mexico

  • Symposium perspectives

Kevin Gover, Under Secretary for Museums and Culture, Smithsonian

  • Cultural representations of indigenous slavery

Eduardo Díaz, director, Smithsonian Latino Center; Acting Director, National Museum of the American Latino

  • Fourth session: “Indo-Hispanics: contemporary indigenous and Hispanic intersections”

Ana X. Gutiérrez Sisneros, Isabel War Trujillo, Patricia Trujillo, Simón Romero

  • Fifth session: “Compadrazgo and genocide in California”

Benjamin Madley, Erika Pérez, Christina Maria Salazar, Helen Louise Salazar, Anthea M. Hartig

  • Sixth session: “Legacies of indigenous slavery”

Vanielle Blackhorse, Mary Elliott, Brandie Macdonald, Royleen J. Ross, Honorable Brian D. Vallo, Michelle Delaney

Mary Elliott, Curator of American Slavery, National Museum of African American History and Culture

Tribal President Greg Sarris, Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria

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