Phillip B. (Felipe) Gonzales


Photo: Phillip (Felipe) Gonzales
SSCI 1062

Curriculum vitae


PhD, Sociology, University of California - Berkeley (1985)

Research Interests

Race and Ethnicity, Social Movements, Political Sociology, Latino/a Studies



Politica: Nuevomexicanos and American Political Incorporation, 1821-1910

Phillip B. Gonzales

Política offers a stunning revisionist understanding of the early political incorporation of Mexican-origin peoples into the U.S. body politic in the nineteenth century. Historical sociologist Phillip B. Gonzales reexamines the fundamental issue in New Mexico’s history, namely, the dramatic shift in national identities initiated by Nuevomexicanos when their province became ruled by the United States.

Gonzales provides an insightful, rigorous, and controversial interpretation of how Nuevomexicano political competition was woven into the Democratic and Republican two-party system that emerged in the United States between the 1850s and 1912, when New Mexico became a state. Drawing on newly discovered archival and primary sources, he explores how Nuevomexicanos relied on a long tradition of political engagement and a preexisting republican disposition and practice to elaborate a dual-party political system mirroring the contours of U.S. national politics.

Política is a tour de force of political history in the nineteenth-century U.S.–Mexico borderlands that reinterprets colonization, reconstructs Euro-American and Nuevomexicano relations, and recasts the prevailing historical narrative of territorial expansion and incorporation in North American imperial history. Gonzales provides critical insights into several discrete historical processes, such as U.S. racialization and citizenship, integration and marginalization, accommodation and resistance, internal colonialism, and the long struggle for political inclusion in the borderlands, shedding light on debates taking place today over Latinos and U.S. citizenship.   

Available for purchase here.


Forced Sacrifice as Ethnic Protest The Hispano Cause in New Mexico and the Racial Attitude Confrontation of 1933

Phillip B. Gonzales

Forced Sacrifice as Ethnic Protest brings to light important aspects of identity politics by introducing "forced sacrifice" as a type of protest that ethnic minorities in the United States occasionally mount, particularly against liberal regimes in public institutions. Social science concepts and the literature on social sacrifice help define a spontaneous confrontation in which the protest crowd dramatically forces the institution to dismiss – that is, to sacrifice – one of its own agents as a symbolic concession to ethnic inequality and as a way to open up social reform. The Racial Attitude Confrontation of 1933, involving the Hispanos of New Mexico, is analyzed in terms of forced sacrifice. The Hispano cause is clarified as a significant tradition of ethnic mobilization that arose in the Southwest between the 1880s and the 1930s, revealing some key symbolic and instrumental elements of identity as minority groups mobilize for their interests.

Available for purchase here.

Recent/Select Publications:

Gonzales, Phillip B. 2015. “New Mexico Statehood and Political Inequality: The Case of Nuevomexicanos,” New Mexico Historical Review, 90 (1, January): 31-52.

Gonzales, Phillip B. 2013. “Mexican Party, American Party, Democratic Party: Establishing the American Political Party in New Mexico, 1848-1853,” New Mexico Historical Review, 88 (3, Summer): 253-285.

Gonzales, Phillip B., ed. 2007. Expressing New Mexico: Creativity, Ritual and Memory. Tucson, AZ: University of Arizona Press.

Gonzales, Phillip B. and Ann Massmann. 2006. "Loyalty Questioned: Nuevomexicanos and the Great War," Pacific Historical Review, 75 (4): 629-666.

Gonzales, Phillip B. 2006 "Whither the Nuevomexicanos: The Career of a Southwestern Intellectual Discourse, 1907-2004," The Social Science Journal 43 (2): 273-286.


Advanced Undergraduate Work in Sociology

Senior Honors Thesis

Sociology of Mexican Americans

Race & Ethnicity (graduate)