Beliefs and Holy Places
October 23, 1993
About the Author
Jim Griffith is the former director of the Southwest Folklore Center at the University of Arizona Library. He is currently a research associate at the Southwest Center.
About this Book
The region once known as Pimería Alta (now southern Arizona and northern Sonora) has, for more than three centuries, been a melting pot for the beliefs of native Tohono O'odham and immigrant Yaquis and those of colonizing Spaniards and Mexicans. One need look no further than the roadside crosses along desert highways or the diversity of local celebrations to sense the richness of this cultural co-mingling. Folklorist Jim Griffith has lived in the Pimería Alta for more than 30 years, visiting its holy places and attending its fiestas, and has uncovered a background of belief, tradition and history lying beneath the surface of these cultural expressions. In "Beliefs and Holy Places," he reveals some of the supernaturally sanctioned relationships that tie people to places within that region, describing the cultural and religious meanings of locations and showing how bonds between people and places have in turn created relationships between places--a spiritual geography, undetectable on physical maps.