Hernandez v. Texas addressed civil rights for Mexican Americans, was the first case to be argued before the Supreme Court by Mexican American attorneys, and set a new precedent in how the 14th Amendment was interpreted in terms of race and ethnicity.
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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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welcome to stuff. You, Mr History class from how stuff works, tat, come and welcomed the pod cast. I am Tracy, we will say highly fine. It's been a while, since we had a Supreme court case on the show as a guest of the gas right, you that's become a theme sort of, and at least in terms of yours. In my time on the show
had several Supreme Court episodes and I think the last one that we had was one of the goofy or ones, because we talked about butter verses, margarine. Yet this is not a goofy or ones
We are talking about or numbers verses, Texas. We gotta Bree
mention in our past episode on mercurial Garcia, and that was the first mexican immigrants to the United States to earn the medal of Honor and, in addition,
directly to civil rights for Mexican Americans Hernandez versions. Texas was also the first case to be argued before the Supreme Court by mexican american attorneys and set off
the new president and how the fourteenth amendment to the constitution was interpreted in terms of race and ethnicity. Aladdin summit were talking about today
really applied. More broadly, it's a pretty much everybody of hispanic latino descent. But specifically
what we are talking about are our mexican Americans. So the other thing is this was decided it right before Brown Verses Board like a week or two before the decision came down
in brown versus bored, so a lot of ways. It was completely overshadowed by that way. More famous decision, although
was really important in its own way and Hernandez Mandate versus Texas.
I am with the motor and the facts it
were really not in dispute on August Forest nineteen fifty
Pedro Hernandez, who went by PETE got into an argument
Gaetano Espinosa. There was known as Joe a chink
Sanchez is tavern in Edna, Texas Edna is southwest of Houston and South
San Antonio and sits roughly between those two cities. It's not clear exactly what started to this argument, but according to witnesses that fund
ain't Espinosa started making fun of Hernandez because he had a club foot and her name is left the bar he walked home, got a rifle came back and shot Espinosa in the chest in front of witnesses. Espinosa died, not long after it
in the hospital in less than twenty four hours after the crime Hernandez with
I did for murder four days later, he was denied bail.
and ass? His mother went to Gustavo Garcia known as Gus for help in Garcia was a
when at civil rights lawyer in San Antonio? He served as
a legal adviser to the League of United, latin american citizens or Lou lack, which was the first civil
its organisation for Mexican Americans in the United States, and he served in that thing.
A city for the american Gee, I forum, which was formed in the wake of world war, two to help Mexican amiss
and veterans get access to the benefits they were entitled to under the g I bill of rights. I can't I want to do an episode at some point about the g I bill. Yeah.
the language in the bill
have anything related to race or ethnicity in it, but the way
it was actually implemented. It was a lie easier for white returning veterans said get access to the benefits that were involved in pretty much any one else, so that has really complicated history in terms of
how and who allowed to get access to things like education and binding homes, and things like that. So by the time he agreed to represent PETE Hernandez, Garcia had been involved with some of the biggest social rights cases for Mexicans.
second Americans in Texas. They had worked as a legal advocates for migrant workers and the research programme, which we ve talked about on the show before he had also been part of it.
and I got oversees Bell: Strap Independent school district. The nineteen forty eight no got oversees bell, strap followed the California case of Mendez Verses Westminster, which we ve also talked about on the show, and it made segregation of mexican american schoolchildren illegal in the state of Texas
with the exception of like first greater as you genuinely needed, some more english language instruction before they joined classes were being tie in English. Garcia had
so represented the family of Felix long gory, who was killed in action in world war. Two long areas
was returned home to Texas. The only funeral home in his home town of three rivers refuse to allow its chapel to be used for the service, because in the directors words quote, the whites would not
get after them, Senator linen, be Johnson got involved. Longer area was buried at Arlington. National cemetery joint
Garcia. The defence team was Carlos Cadenza pews prior civil rights work included, challenging restrictive covenants that were keeping Mexican Americans from being able to buy, landed Saint in tone
oh Garcia was known as an incredibly eloquent and charismatic speaker and Canada had a head for numbers and statistics. So when they work together as illegal team, typically Garcia would be the one who argued the case in court and cut out meticulously assent
What other research and the information that was needed to make that argument in court also
the team or John Jay Herrera known as Johnny and James Damned, who practice together in Houston and hurry, rang Garcia, already knew one another and they actually work together on Delgado Versus Blast Europe. So the reason this seemingly straightforward
I'll town murder trial, required a team of four attorneys, including some of the most well known civil rights lawyers working in Texas at the time that it was not just the same.
we're working out another case together in Fort Ben County Johnny Herrera,
idly wondered to James stand a why he had never seen a mexican person on a jury there and then, when they looked into it further, they realise that
had been no one of mexican descent on a fort, been county Jerry and more than thirty five years. The same pattern was true in Jackson, County, where Hernandez was going
tried who I was not the first person to make this observation
well, Anglo juries had come up at least seven times in Texas Court, since nineteen thirty one there hasn't been a mixed
in person on a jury or to be more specific. Anyone who had a recognizably, mexican or latin American surname in twenty five years in ITALY. Seventy Texas counties every attempt to address that
parity had been met with the same legal response from the state in the
these words quote well: Mexicans
cartesians and there were cartesians on the jury. So what are you fussing about rare as in the end as client and a seat of Sanchez had been found guilty of
her around. In the end, I had appealed the conviction on the grounds that Sanchez had been discriminated against by the existence of this all white jury, but the Texas Court of Appeals upheld the conviction making that same argument as a Mexican Sanchez was white and the jury was white, so there was no discrimination at that point,
the team was out of fines. Fanchons was really reluctant to pursue the case any further as well. He was afraid that he would get a harsher sentence if his conviction was overturned and he had to be retried,
this Mexicans are white argument, stretched back to the treaty of Guadeloupe Hidalgo, which ended the maxim
american WAR in eighteen. Forty eight and the war ended with me
go see being a huge amount of territory, much of it inhabited by both Mexicans and indigenous people to the United States. In article eight, the treaty gave Mexicans live again, United States territory, a choice. To quote the treaty quote those who shall prefer to remain in the sad territory of my either retain the title and rights of mexican citizens, or
Are those of citizens of the United States, but they shall be under the obligation to make their election within one year from the date of the exchange of ratification of this treaty and those who
remain in the said. Territory is, after the expiration of that year, without having declared their intention to retain the character of Mexicans, shall be considered to have elected, to become citizens of the EU
it states. The treaty went on to recognise the property. Rights of Mexicans am to state that those who become
American would be quote, admitted at the proper time to the enjoyment,
all the rights of citizens of the United States according to the principles of the constitution,
and, in the meantime, shall be maintained and protected in the free enjoyment of their liberty and property and secured in the free,
exercise of their religion without restriction. Of course, this is just one aspect of the whole treaty and is also important to note that Mexico had given its indigenous population the rights of citizens ship, but those rights were essentially ignored once the territory they ve been living and became part of the United States. So, even though, in theory, if you had mexican citizenship before you were supposed to have american citizenship, now that citizenship was denied the indigenous population that was living in former mexican territory and for the mexican citizens of spanish descent once that year was up after the ratification of the treaty of Guadeloupe, a dog. Oh
lest they had specifically said they were retaining mexican citizenship. They were to be considered american citizens, and all of this together meant that from a legal perspective, they were white and we'll get to help them
built a legal defence around all of this after we first pause and have a little bit of a sponsor break. This episode
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throughout the murder trial of Beet Hernandez as legal team tried to establish that the absence of Mexicans on the jury was discriminatory. Their first effort in doing this was on October. Fourth, nineteen, fifty one when Garcia Cardona try
of course, the original indictment, because that indictment had been delivered by an all Anglo grand jury. As expected, no one was surprised by this. The court refused and the trial began as planned on it.
There were and all Anglo Jerry was selected. An Wednesday
was done. The legal team file emotion to clash in the hearing that followed
We spent a lot of time trying to establish that regard
so whether they were legally considered white Mexicans, were treated as a class apart. The team noted things like restaurants, that post
no Mexicans signs and the recently ended school segregation and they asked a number of women.
Things like would you
say a german man in a white man how about an
a man in a white man. How about a mexican and a white man
and even though the resulting answers provided solid evidence that mexican residents of Jackson County were treated differently from anglo residents.
the motion was ultimately denied. I learn to really fascinating things while reading through all of this question, hang tearing the hearing too
The jury and one of them was that at the time a lot more people use
word: Latin American rather than Mexican, because People- let I mean allotted for reasons of preferred language, to talk about stuff changes over time and the right of normal, like that's expected part of it, was that people were kind of
but if you said Mexican that you might actually mean a mexican national living in Mexico right now, rather than a person of mexican descent living in the United States,
and the other one was that apparently people still considered bohemian to be a recognisable. Why has no class ray? And so some of the questions,
Like would you say all look, there's a bohemian in a white man and people were like no, of course not. That's weird like it back.
birthing, I've even thought of, but by means of clear in case it's not obvious. People word were like now,
say a german man and a white man. Those are both white men, people what they would. You say. I'm executed a white man, we're like they built that case. There were a lot of questions, but in spite of that, they did not quash the jury.
after the jury, selection and all those pretrial motions that charges against Hernandez at were read at one fifteen p m. On October, eleventh, the jury went to deliberations that
or thirty in the afternoon, and by eight p m that same night they had reached a verdict. Hernandez was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
Holy Writ Indiana had already tried to make a discrimination argument in their appeal of Emma Saito Sanchez is murder conviction. So the team started with that brief as the foundation for
repeal of Hernandez his conviction. They drew parallels to the systemic exclusion of black jurors, which this
queen Cor, had already found violated the constitutional rights to due process and equal protection, and they all
drew parallels too how Mexicans retreated quite differently from people of other nationalities
really were considered to be White Cardona, who crafted alot of the brief, also made the point that, in his words, quote about the only time that so called Mexicans, many of them Texans for seven generations, are covered with the caucasian cloak as when it serve the ends of those who would shamelessly deny this large segment of the Texas population. Their fundamental rights so basically nobody's really calling us white until it suits them to be like all you're not being discriminated against, because your white you're different until we have to defend ourselves and then you're, just
does Hernandez. This case was brought before the Texas Court of criminal appeals on November twenty first nineteen, fifty one with the team arguing that the lower court had aired in denying the motions to quash both the grand and petty juries, the Texas quarter
he'll, disagreed and affirmed that conviction. On June eighteenth, nineteen fifty two and the appeals court decision, it noted that the fourteenth amendments, equal protection clause applies to two classes. Only quote the way.
Is comprising one class and the Negro race comprising the other class. We appeals court also repeated part of the decision that had get it had given in the Sanchez case, quote
Mexican people are not a separate race but white people of spanish dissent that went on to specify quote in contemplation of the fourteenth amendment
Mexicans are therefore members of and within the classification of the White race, as distinguished for members of the negro raised the team
ride, to bring the jury selection issue back to the court of appeals on October twenty second, but the court declined to hear it so familiar their next step would be to take this case to the United States. Supreme Court
Although this had always been their goal, they recognise that it was an incredibly risky decision to try it. On a personal level. It was risky for Peter Nand, as he had been found guilty of murder and sentenced to life in prison, and if the Supreme Court overturned his conviction, he would need to be. Retried
like we said it was clear that he had committed this crime and if he was retried, he could potentially be sentenced to death going to the Supreme Court carried other risks as well.
Or did not find in Hernandez his favour. It would probably take at least a generation for another similar case to be heard. That meant that
we're generation. Mexican Americans in many Texas counties would continue to face juries composed only of Anglos and since the whole
issue was tied to whether Mexicans were wide. There were,
de of imagined scenarios and consequences. Should the court decide that no, they were not. This risk was compounded by the fact that people and, as this case was not particularly likely to elicit the court sympathy at the same time as Hernandez is of fancies of cases, were being heard intact,
civil rights cases involving black Americans or playing out elsewhere in the United States as well. These were often.
ACT by national organizations like the enable HTTP with experienced civil rights lawyers who were carefully selecting cases whose defendants were likely to be sympathetic and regarded by white justices as respectable and worthy of compassion like this has come up and
out of past episodes like the Mildred and Richard loving, were sympathetic people, because they were a couple who loved each other and wanted to live together in Virginia and Rosa Parks was sympathetic because she had a job and was like. We had a reputation for being a kind person who went to church. All of these things were part of deciding whose case would be presented to this.
of course. This was not the case with PETE Hernandez. He had murdered someone after a fight in front of witnesses. At the same time, a Supreme Court case seemed like an opportunity
to try to right some of the wrongs within the court system, so the team filed their petition
a writ of sir. She really with the Supreme Court on JANET,
twenty first nineteen. Fifty three, this is the document.
formerly asks the higher court to review the lower court's decision
and this was a day passed the deadline and typewritten when the Supreme Court's rule stated that they must be professionally printed by the court agreement.
the case anyway, and on October twelve nineteen, fifty three it was scheduled for the next session. People
really worried that the fact that they turn it in a daily and typewritten instead of professionally printed, was like an indicator of bad things to come.
viewing a case before the Supreme Court is expensive to be allowed
do it at all. Attorneys have to apply for and be granted admission to the Supreme Court bar. This requires sponsorship from people who have
had he been admitted to the Supreme Court bar. So, in addition to the application fees
team, none of whom had ever argued before the Supreme Court before had to find other attorneys, who are already approved to sponsor them and then pay a fee to apply. There are also filing for
for the case itself and the team arguing the case is responsible for paying for all the pre the briefs to be printed along with travel to Washington, DC and food and lodging while there, and especially in the cases of attorneys, you have private practices. The disruption
of their businesses, an income while they're gone. Her name is-
we did not have a lot of money. They were basically a collection of local Texas lawyers, whose own practices in incomes as Tracy just suggested, were going to suffer while they were away so
The Robert Marshall, civil liberties Trust contributed five thousand dollars to the cost of the proceedings
Go Lula chapters made donations as well. The rest of their budget was filled in
small donations from other civic organizations and even individual people. There are interviews with some of the facts that were involved in all of this. He would talk about people who just really did not have any money coming up to them on a street and light handing them a dollar and being like. Please use this to help pay for the case, because their budget was so tight. They eventually decided that night
All of them would go to Washington, DC, Garcia, Cadena and Herrera would all go to Washington wildly and stayed behind a Texas both to try to save money. On all of their costs, and also to try to keep all of their law, businesses functioning while the rest of them were away
money became one of the sources of tension for the team once they actually got to Washington, Garcia was,
somewhat of a showman and had a flame personality, and he hired a publicist and reserved a hotel sweet that the rest of the team thought was beyond their budget.
It wasn't just about luxury, though at that point, the industry,
BP and other organisations fighting for equal rights for black Americans were now
organizations with better funding and much better name recognition, brown version
board was National NEWS and Garcia really wanted a similar national structure and recognition for mexican Americans
leading up to their arguments before the Supreme Court. Garcia himself also became a source of tension as well. He struggled with alcoholism and the day before they were to argue. He vanished from the hotel and finally returned very late and heavily intoxicated the rest of the team, while trying to sober him up started to worry that the whole thing was gonna fall apart
and after we take another quick break, we will talk about the Supreme Court argument and what happened afterward. This episode of stuff you missed in history class, is brought to you by Norton, three hundred and sixty with Lifelock. Let's just say, you're shopping online with your
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Dot, com, slash history, that's Norton, DOT, com, slash history for twenty five percent off. At present, the state of Texas was argued before the United States Supreme Court on January, eleventh, nineteen. Fifty four, the question before the court was is the equal protection of the law clause of the Fourteenth amendment violated when estate tries a person of a particular race or ancestry before a jury in which all persons of that race or ancestry have
and excluded from serving the team strategy was twofold, they would establish them
Second jurors, specifically, those with spanish surnames, were being systematically intentionally excluded from jury.
In Jackson, County Texas, including in the trial of Peat Hernandez, and they would also established that the EC
Lucian from jury service was part of an overall pattern of discrimination against Mexican Americans. Treating them as a class apart from white citizens establish saying that Mexican Americans were excluded from Jerry's is easy enough. They had plenty of documentation that almost fifteen percent of the counties pocket.
Jason had Mexicana latin american surnames, including eleven percent of the man over aged twenty one about six or seven percent of the free holders, and the tax rolls were of mexican dissent as well. Yet, in spite of all of that
ro people with mexican or latin american surnames had served on Jackson County jury in twenty five years. They also
pull any of evidence of Mexican Americans and Jackson County not being treated as white until
decision in Delgado versus blast trope in September, nineteen, forty nine mexican children in Texas
not been allowed to attend school with white children. There was at least one restaurant with
hosted sign, the Mexicans would not be served along with signs. The said quote: no Chile, which meant exactly the same thing, but the most compelling piece of evidence of discrimination against against Mexican Americans that was
scented before the Supreme Court came from Johnny Herrera his own experience and had also been part of that first motion to quash the jury internet as his original trial. During that original trial and Jackson, county Pereira had gone to the restroom. If he had found
there were two bathrooms. One of them was unmarked when the other was labeled colored men and under that own, raise a key or men. Here,
meanwhile, the state of Texas argued that the lack of mexican and latin american surnames among jurors was just a coincidence and
Mexicans were wide, so the fourteen them
did not apply.
In other words, at the courthouse where the Texas legal system was arguing that Mexicans were white, there were
segregated restrooms one unmarked, and only for white men
and the other marked for black and mexican men Garcia. We rather, we said, had come back to the hotel.
really late and heavily intoxicated was pretty quiet during the earlier part of the oral arguments. But after some of the justices asked a series
questions along the lines of whether Mexican Americans or citizens, and whether they could speak English, you kind of revived he started. An incredibly
Current legal argument that combines the histories of Mexico and the United States, including the fact that many
of the families who were being affected by the systemic jury. Exclusion had been in taxes for generations before SAM Houston even showed up there. That was, unfortunately, the transcript of this does not seem to you.
This anywhere anymore. But it was such a compelling, listen that when his time was up chief justice, Earl WAR and told him to continue and allowed him to talk for twelve more minutes, the Supreme Court
shoot its unanimous decision on May third. Nineteen. Fifty four by
denied a jury of his peers, including Mexican Americans, PETE Hernandez had been denied fourteenth amendment protections and
denial was unconstitutional as part of Earl warrants, majority
opinion, he wrote quote throughout our history. Differences and race and color have defined easily identifiable groups which have at times required the aid of the courts in securing equal treatment under the laws, but community prejudices are not static and from time to time, other differences from the community norm may define other groups which need the same protection. Whether such a group exists within a community
question of fact, when the existence of a distinct class has demonstrated that it is further shown that the laws as written or as applied single out that class for different treatment, not based on some reasonable classification, the guarantees of the constitution have been violated. The fourteenth amendment is not directed solely against discrimination due to a two class theory that is based on differences between white and negro. He also
not to say quote, but it taxes are credulity to say that mere chance resulted in there being no members of this class among the over six thousand jurors called in the past twenty five years. The result bespeaks
discrimination whether or not it was a conscious decision on the part
These are pre court. Having issued its decision, the Texas Department of corrections with notified that around, as would be remanded for a retrial
I better Nand, as would be remanded for a retrial on May seventh. Nineteen. Fifty four members, four days after the decision was announced, he was right.
indicted. On September. Twenty eight nineteen, fifty four and the trial was moved to another county after it was a successful petition for a change of venue. Garcia argued the new trial, which was held on November, fifteenth and included to Mexico,
friends among the jury, Hernandez was again found guilty and this time sentenced to twenty years in prison, he
recommended for parole on June, seventh, nineteen sixty and governor price.
you ordered his release on the next day. This was in part due to address
see by Garcia, who recognise that Hernandez had knowingly risked his own life in pursuit of this civil rights goal. As we said earlier, the facts of the case where
we're in it, he had committed murder, so
By allowing this case to be appealed, key was knowing
risking a death sentence. Hernandez versus Texas was no.
Bull and influential in a lot of ways, since it set the precedent that the fourteenth amendments protections applied to Mexican Americans, it laid the groundwork for fighting other forms of discrimination against them, including things like housing and employ
discrimination. The idea that the Fourteenth amendment was not just related to a two class idea of race was also a huge deal before her name is versus Texas, most for
the amendment arguments were about black and why not about any other race or ethnic group, but
location of those same rights and protection to Mexican Americans meant that in the United States, race was not just a two class system. There were other class
as well. Some of them not related to race in any way who could be the targets of unconsciously
in all discrimination. To recap what we said at the top of the show Fernandez verses Texas was also hugely important, because it was the first Supreme Court case related to civil rights for Mexican Americans, particularly after the world were to era, and it was the first to be our
you'd by Mexican Americans, people doing it weren't being backed by any kind of nation, wide legal organization or a strategy. They were just a handful of local lawyers who were also mexican American of which
we're not that many practicing and taxes, the four of them, represented roughly twenty percent of the mexican american lawyers practicing anywhere in Texas at the time. So this was a groundbreaking first term alive, different directions. Her name
versus Texas continued to be the main precedent in civil rights cases, for mixed can Americans until nine
seventy one when says narrows versus Corpus Christie, independent school districts recognised Hispanics as a distinct minority group with all the constitutional
sections that apply to other minority groups applying to Hispanics as well. However, the core issue that started this whole case, such as the under wraps
taken of Mexican Americans on Jerry's continues to be an issue and nineteen. Seventy seven, the Supreme Court heard constant ADA Verses Party to which found that a defendant had been discriminated against in part, because seventy nine percent of the counties population working
lived with Mexican American, but over an eleven year period. Only thirty nine percent of those summoned to be on the grand jury were Mexican American, Carlos Cadena served as the city
NEO, San Antonio until nineteen sixty one when he joined the faculty at Saint Mary
school of law and became the nations first.
an american law professor. He was
appointed to the fourth court of appeals and eventually became its chief justice, making him the first mexican American to hold that position. He helped
found the mexican American Legal Defence and educational fun and became its first national president. Here,
of lung cancer in two thousand and eleven
Johnny Herrera continued with his civil rights work for the rest of his career, eventually becoming the National Lou Lack president and working as its national legal adviser. He died after a stroke and nineteen eighty six,
was the number was appointed to serve as a federal judge under President Jimmy Carter. He died of prostate cancer in two thousand six. This Garcia, sadly struggled with alcohol abuse for the rest of his life, which was later compounded by depression him he was in and out of hospitals, and he was
bar after passing bad checks. He stopped attending meetings of Lou Lack and the g I forum and whose behaviour became increasingly erratic. He died on June. Third, nineteen sixty four and he was forty eight
its clear that Hernandez versus Texas broaden the applicability of the fourteen amendments protections. But there continues to be summed up.
About how much it actually helped Mexican Americans most of its arguments, how did he was surnames which exe
who did people who had changed their last names or who
example- were mexican on their mother's side, but had their fathers anglo surname. And at least for a time it set the precedent that people who were
Acted under the fourteen amendment were real
only entitled to those protections when it was clear that their hope
unity was operating under a systemic state of discrimination and although that was later refined
did by other court cases
Whole thing wasn't framed as whether Mexican Americans dessert,
equal rights, but whether Mexican Americans were white. Actually one of the most interesting things to me on a third of intellectual level. About this whole case, I've seen a lot of people. Think of race is having some kind of inherently biological component, but it really is a social construct. And if you look at the history of race in the United States, there is a whole negotiation of who is and is not allowed to be white and a lot of it is fascinating and sometimes disturbing. And if
want a way more condensed, look into how that has worked throughout United States history. I strongly recommend the serious seeing white from the podcast seen on radio, which goes through the whole thing we it touches on a lot of things we ve talked about on the shoulder
were, but a lot more compressed timeframe like we have some of the same things we have talked about on the show, like some exact episodes that we have had on the show they have talked about as well, but its condensed over, I think thirteen or fourteen episodes of their podcast, I also didn't say, but PETE Hernandez sort of disappears from the historical record after he was poorer. Odin
at some point. He clearly died, but it's not it's not otherwise clear exactly what happened at that time. After that and
was about other stuff that we just said. Bananas, verses, Texas is unimportant and groundbreaking Supreme Court case that is just buried by Brown Verses Board coming immediately after it, basically like
I looking for our work related to this. There are so many pictures from Brown versus board and
basically nine from this I'm interested, and it did not get the kind of national attention and coverage Babel
Where did, although people at home and Texas were waiting by
radio to find out what the Supreme Court had decided Blake.
people were as attached to finding out as like any other civil rights issues that directly to pertains to a person. People will wait for to find out what the Supreme Court is gonna announce on it and that's definitely what happened in Texas with this particular case
Do you have a little bit a listener, real, the finishing off.
hey listen, Jonathan Jonathan wrote a new called even pushes ethnicity and conference. As I was listening to
two episodes on a mean Partia and was surprised when he mentioned in part to you that he would have wanted
about one of the german african companies, because he was ethnically german and part one
You say he was a german jus which would make him ethnically ask uneasy, not german. Given the history of anti semitic persecution, you even mentioned that he may have faced Anti Semitism and his education is not obvious to me that he would be
out of his german nationality and want to know about its african endeavours, although I realise he may have assimilated into german christian society after his men
remarried best Jonathan. So thank you very much Jonathan for writing. This note it is
one hundred percent a mystery to me, how I mean Partia conceived of his own like ethnic and national identity right
from. I read a lot of his papers and notes, and things like that in the context of a biographies that were compiled about him in the nineteenth and
and when he does talk about it, it's usually in the context of letters to his mom or his sister. Where he's like
worry. I know I change my name, but I'm still german, like that's, that's pretty much the only time he references it at all that at least that I found he doesn't seem to really think
on it a lot at least nine away that he rode down in his own journals and then, when it comes to other people's writing of him, most of them
people who were writing about him during or shortly after his lifetime.
We had a motive like when german,
Both were writing about him. They wrote about him as a german and really tried to diminish. The idea
that he might have converted to Islam and then people who were jewish like
We were writing about him, tended to more emphasised the fact that he had been a jewish from birth, but then had converted like its. It really seems like it's it's hard to get a sense of both how he can see
of himself and how other people, because even have him, because a lot of people he wrote down things about him, clearly wanted to establish that he was one thing or another. When we really dont have the good sense of
We thought of himself the family did convert when he was five and he was baptized at five. So from that point on at least from like from a practising religion standpoint, its it seems like they were Lutheran, so was definitely not my intensive diminish the fact that the family
had been jewish, but I also feel like a lot of ways. He is a chameleon in terms of his ethnicity and his religion, and it's it's really fuzzy how he thought about all those things related to his own self, which is usually how you and I try to
focus raises how people framed their own identity, and in this case, as I mean it's, it's a little unclear for what it is
you need a minute, he seemed to not be terribly attached to any of those concepts. Anyway, you know the fact:
you like up and left half of his life to start over again and didn't, seem to have like any concerns.
I'm leaving behind all of the life I have built to slay cookie now now two different life like he did his
sense of identity seem to not be attached to much of any cultural concepts that every kind of kind of a more
Answer, shift a lot depending on where he was
what he was doing at a time and and people who encounter him at various points, would have vastly different descriptions of how he came across them on. Basically everything aside from the fact that he was very clean and meticulous and
Putting a hundred things about how he presented himself in turn
religion or at or his nationality, or anything like that like that that really shifts alot depending on when people encountered him aware. So that's that, thank you again for sending is that new fear like to write to us about this or any other podcast whereat history podcast. The house
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The twenty seven club as a new part cast about famous musicians who died prematurely and sometimes mysteriously at the age of twenty seven. This pod past is hosted by me. Jake Brennan creator hosted the hit music, untrue crime, podcast disgrace season, one of the twenty seven club launches January, twenty seventh, two thousand twenty, with twelve episodes on the life and death, Jimi Hendrix twenty seven club contains adult content and explicit language. You can listen to the choice having club on her radio out apple pie, cast wherever you get your ass watch out for your ears.