Religious Persecution

DEFINITION: Persistent mistreatment of an individual or group by another group. The most common forms are religious, ethnic persecution, and political persecution.

Essential Questions:

  1. What are the multiple forms of persecution that have been evident in historical treatment of Indigenous people (Diné, Pueblo, Apache) of New Mexico and how do they persist today?
  2. What historical events demonstrate the religious persecution of Indigenous people of New Mexico vis a vis sacred sites?


  1. Pre-Statehood (19th century)
    1. The Navajo Long Walk
    2. Deculturalization and “Americanization” vis a vis boarding schools
    3. Scorched Earth Campaign
    4. Religious Crime Code
    5. Warm Springs and Chiricahua Apaches in NM

  2. Statehood (1912 to present)
    1. Sacred sites
      1. Taos Blue Lake
      2. Mount Taylor
      3. San Francisco Peaks
      4. Zuni Salt Lake
      5.  Petroglyphs

 Connections to Understandings

  1. Understandings of land
  2. Complexity of Identity
  3. Power/hegemony
  4. Empowerment/Agency/Resistance