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Jose Maria Rodriquez-Acosta (1878-1941) - The Gypsies of Sacromonte, 1908 / Smallest of three.

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Jose Maria Rodriquez-Acosta (1878-1941) - The Gypsies of Sacromonte, 1908

José María Rodríguez-Acosta González de la Cámara was a Spanish painter, known for portraits, urban landscapes and genre scenes. He also did still-lifes and some female nudes.
Born: February 25, 1878, Granada, Spain
Died: March 19, 1941, Granada, Spain

See also Acosta's "Woman in a Green Dress" posted 5 days ago:
I googled "Gypsies of Sacramonte" to learn more about this community.
From the first site: "This other-worldly barrio is home to many of Granada’s Gypsies, as well as artists, intellectuals and misfits from all over the world." and this from a touring company which touts itself as offering "unique trips that care about the world". It might well have said: gypsies, artists, intellectuals and other misfits". It was infuriating.

More accurately: The Romani (what so-called "gypsies" call themselves) moved into the hillside cave homes created by Muslims and Jews when Al-Andalus was a center of Islamic/Arab culture and rule. No doubt some Muslims and Jews stayed after the conquest of "Andalucia" by Ferdinand and Isabella in 1492, converting to Christianity. (The choice, if people were given a choice - conversion, exile, or dying for your right to say.) Many fled across the straits to North Africa. But many remained and indeed the descendants of these people who had lived there, creating a vibrant civilization over an 800-year period, are there today, and can be seen the facial features of Andalucians. . . as well as in their music (flamenco), poetry, cuisine, etc. A number of Andalucians have over the past 50 years, been returning to Islam, some taking Arabic names in place of names given to them by the Inquisition's conversion process. They are a community distinct from a 20th century immigrants from North Africa. They are Andalucians, they are Spaniards.
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Thank you both for continuing this important conversation. Have a grand day. . each of you.

I absolutely agree with you, Carol, and thank you for commenting on this.
It's important that we be aware of our tendency toward categorizing.


Thank you for all the interesting leads on Spokane's history. Too bad about the video, but the book sounds wonderful! Unfortunately, I think a history of working against many swaths of categorized fellow humans is a common one here, and frankly, much of the world. It is interesting and important to learn about the particular ways it happened in various places so that we can understand the present day and recognize what harm was and continues to be done.


Great research here @donns. . . I love the links to the other resources and the anecdotal pieces. All of it paints an interesting story of Spokane.

My leads about that time in Spokane history ended for now unfortunately.
PBS doesn't offer the "Gypsies in Spokane" video anymore. I told my brother who still lives there about the curse put on Spokane by the Romani in the 1980's, and he said, "Well that explains everything!"
Carol, thank you for your note. I just learned a bunch about Spokane's history, maybe around the time of your great-grandmother, in the new book "Cold Millions" about the labor and women's movement in Spokane.
The town has an interesting background that pretty much worked against Native Americans, women, workers, Romani and Blacks whenever it could.


This is all wonderful and interesting-- the painting and the information above and below. I have a connection to Spokane. A chunk of one great-grandmother's family left the homestead in Punxsutawney PA and moved to Spokane. I met a contingent when I was a kid, but the thread of connection didn't hold. Still, I feel an additional layer of interest when I think about where these relatives fit into the culture and history of Spokane.


Oh Donna.. .what a great story. . .and I'm following any leads you provide. I'm in my morning coffee period. . . Though first I had to walk up a hill and "buy" some electricity, which ran out in the middle of the night. . . it's what happens if you don't keep your eye on the meter there by the kitchen door.

Oh, Audrey, in fine Jigidi form, you opened up a treasure of memories and information. The Romani, Gypsies in 1960's Spokane Washington, were a fascinating piece of Spokane culture. I worked in a chain fabric store during that time, and when a coworker whispered, "The Gypsies are coming," it meant my boring job was about to get lively. Speaking another language -- rare in Spokane -- dozens of chattering women and children would swoop into the store and select bolts of colorful silky fabric. All eyes were on them. Once the women selected their new fabrics, a large man in a suit would arrive and peel off 100 dollar bills from his pockets to pay for everyone's new dresses. I loved the spectacle, I loved the stories.
The civil rights era passed by Spokane, but I saw rampant prejudice then in how the Gypsy families were treated.
Taking your idea, I Googled "Gypsies in Spokane" and found out the Gypsies put a curse on the city in the 1980's, and also PBS has a documentary about the Gypsies in Spokane.
But I must get some other work done today, and I'll put off my new Romani/Spokane fascination for after my nap! Many thanks, Audrey.

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