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Querncia book cover
June 2020
University of New Mexico Press

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Reflections on the New Mexico Homeland
Edited by: 
Vanessa Fonseca-Chávez
Levi Romero
Spencer R. Herrera

New Mexico cultural envoy Juan Estevan Arellano, to whom this work is dedicated, writes that querencia “is that which gives us a sense of place, that which anchors us to the land, that which makes us a unique people, for it implies a deeply rooted knowledge of place, and for that reason we respect it as our home.”

This sentiment is echoed in the foreword by Rudolfo Anaya, in which he writes that “querencia is love of home, love of place.” This collection of both deeply personal reflections and carefully researched studies explores the New Mexico homeland through the experiences and perspectives of Chicano and Indigenous/Genízaro writers and scholars from across the state. The importance of querencia for each contributor is apparent in their work and their ongoing studies, which have roots in the culture, history, literature and popular media of New Mexico. Be inspired and enlightened by these essays and discover the history and belonging that is querencia.


Vanessa Fonseca-Chávez is the assistant dean of diversity, equity and inclusion in the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts.

Praise for this book

“Querencia provides us a language for expressing and making sense of deep-seated attachments to land and to the lived environment. This absorbing book opens up a discussion about place and belonging that is long overdue and sure to endure.”

John Nieto-Phillips
Associate professor, University of Indiana

“This collection is a thoughtful and unique approach to the complex relationship between place, land, identity, and culture.”

Adriana Nieto
Associate professor, Metropolitan State University Denver