Pardoning Breadwinners, Constructing Masculinities

This talk examines the gendered rhetorical strategies that Territorial Penitentiary inmates deployed in order to claim entitlement to Territorial Governor George Curry's Holiday Pardons between 1907 and 1910.  How did these men-along with destitute parents, ill wives, and "womanly" children-construct and perform Territorial masculinities by evoking claims of industriousness, familial responsibilities of embattled caregivers, vulnerabilities of boyhood, and financial burdens based upon age and disability?  Attention will be paid to the ways women appear-and subsequently disappear-as recipients of aid, as collaborators in criminal rehabilitation, and as inmates themselves.  Finally, this talk explores whether appeals for Holiday Pardons masked underlying economic instability within Territorial New Mexico's penitentiary system, specifically in Chaves County.1:00:00