Tag Archives: “latin america”

QUAINT #12 Lady Jaguar, the Robber Queen by William H. Manning

Vintage print of a Mexican cowgirl

Lady Jaguar was created by William H. Manning and appeared in “Lady Jaguar, the Robber Queen. A Romance of the Black Chaparral” (Beadle’s New York Dime Library v14 n176, 8 March 1882). Manning (1852-1929) was a Bostonian author of frontier stories and dime novels.

Doña Luisa Villena, a Mexican noblewoman, is drugged and forced to marry Don Manuel, the leader of a local group of bandits. The marriage is a fraud and the “priest” is one of the Don Manuel’s bandits dressed up in ministerial garb, but Doña Luisa does not know that, and she flees in shame and anger when she recovers from the drugs. (The marriage is never consummated, but just the idea of the marriage is bad enough). She goes for help to her beloved uncle, Juan Villena. Juan already bears a grudge against Don Manuel, because through his schemes Juan’s brother Leon, Doña Luisa’s father, was killed. So Doña Luisa and Juan become “Lady Jaguar” and “El Alacran” (“the scorpion”), the leaders of a gang of bandits whose headquarters is the tall, thick, unbroken mesquite that makes up the “black chaparral” of northern Mexico. Together they prey on travelers while searching for the means by which they can avenge themselves on Don Manuel. Juan maintains his alternate identity as a wealthy Mexican landowner, and a local crazy woman, Barbara, moves herself into Juan’s villa and claims to be Doña Luisa. Juan tolerates her presence there because it helps support the alibi of the real Doña Luisa.
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QUAINT #7 “A Question of Reciprocity” by Robert Duncan Milne

The Almirante Latorre (Chilean Navy), as the HMS Canada by the time this photo was taken. This was one of Chile's first modern battleships, built in the early 1900s. Click for source.

“A Question of Reciprocity” was a serial written by Robert Duncan Milne and appeared in San Francisco Examiner, November 15-22, 1891. Milne (1844-1899) was a San Franciscan journalist and writer whose alcoholism first destroyed his substantial talent and then killed him. During his lifetime Milne was the best of the surprisingly large number of science fiction writers of end-of-the-century San Francisco.

The new Chilean government, brought to power by a revolution, refuses to pay for a huge new battleship that the previous government had ordered. The battleship is instead purchased by a group of Chilean business magnates. They are embittered with the United States because of America’s economic and political policies with Chile, and they have decided to use the battleship to recoup some of their financial losses by holding part of the United States for ransom.

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QUAINT #2 Buena Rejon from “The Mexican Ranchero” by Charles E. Averill

Rejon the Ranchero from The Mexican Ranchero. Image from "American Sensations." Click for link.

Buena Rejon was created by Charles E. Averill and appeared in The Mexican Ranchero; or, The Maid of the Chapparal (1847). Averill (?-?) was a popular dime novelist. He is best known for his Kit Carson, Prince of the Gold Hunters (1849).

The Mexican Ranchero is set in Mexico in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War, after the American troops have occupied Mexico City. The truce between the Mexicans and the Americans is broken when Raphael Rejon attacks a squad of American soldiers. Raphael Rejon is the “Lion of Mexico,” the “mortal foe” of Americans. The American soldiers burned his home, his parents died in the fire, and he and his sister were left both orphaned and homeless. Since that time Raphael and his sister, Buena Rejon, the “Maid of the Chaparral,” waged a guerrilla war against the occupiers; “hundreds of Americans…have become the victims of her unerring lasso.”

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Beyond Victoriana Special Edition Odds & Ends #8

For the last post of the year, I’m enjoying a post-holiday recoup and a some good steampunky links. Featuring some oldies but goodies, great vids, the launch of SteamCast in Brazil, and pretty steampunk art after the jump.

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Presenting VAPORPUNK, Tor.com Steampunk, New Layout & More

I’ve been working on major developments with the blog as of late, the first being the website’s new layout (if you’re reading this site via RSS feed, you might want to take a look at the shininess; yeah, I’m a bit proud of this revamped look. ^_^)

More exciting, though, is that Beyond Victoriana‘s content will take a dip into fiction. As a rule, I don’t accept fiction submissions to post on the site, but this is a very special case.  In cooperation with Tachyon Publishing, Beyond Victoriana is hosting translated excerpts from the Brazilian anthology VAPORPUNK.  You may have read Fabio Fernandes’ review of the anthology during Tor’s Steampunk Fortnight, but here is the only place on the internet where you’ll be able to read teasers in English from this anthology. Click on the nifty icon on the website sidebar to read more (or you can click on the cover below.)

Click to read excerpts from VAPORPUNK.

This hasn’t been the only steampunk venture I’ve been working on. I’ve also joined Tor.com’s expanding online family by running Tor.com-Steampunk on Facebook & Twitter.  I’m proud to be working with Tor’s awesome social media team: Amanda Rutter (Tor.com), Tor Art Director Irene Gallo (Tor.com Art), Aidan Moher of A Dribble of Ink (Tor.com Fantasy), and Mark Chitty of Walker of Worlds (Tor.com Science Fiction).

Follow Tor.com Steampunk on Facebook

So, even if you have steampunk stuff that may not be relevant to Beyond Victoriana, it could still be featured on Tor.com-Steampunk.

In other news, there have been interviews abound! NerdCaliber spoke with me during Another Anime Con back in October about the steampunk phenomenon along with members of The Wandering Legion, and I’ve been featured in Brooklyn Exposed about Brooklyn Indie Mart’s Steampunk Day.  The podcast Salon Futura also recently came out with their steampunk episode.  Jeff Vandermeer, Karin Lowachee, and Lavie Tidhar all discuss “Steampunk Without Empire” — and share thoughts about post-colonial steampunk (along with namedropping this site). I also recommend reading John McClarmont’s review/essay about Fire In The Stone, on Salon Futura, which also addresses the question of historical nostalgia and how it relates to today’s current culture.

And confirmations for 2011 conventions are now rolling in. In March 2011, I’ll be reunited with my comrade-in-academia, Jha Goh of Silver Goggles at Nova Albion 2011. The convention’s theme is “Wild, Wild East” and both of us will be presenting our panels on social issues & steampunk.  But not only will be we there, but so will James Ng! And Cherie Priest! And Paul Guinan and Anina Bennet! And many more incredible folks.

If you’re stuck on the US East Coast, though, then I recommend you attend the Steampunk Industrial Revolution happening that same weekend in Nashua, New Hampshire. I deeply regret that I won’t be there to support my New England steampunk friends, but from what I’ve been hearing about this convention, I guarantee that it will change your life. So go and register NOW.

In April 2011, I’ll also be attending Anime Boston as staff. This is actually the only con where I’m not planning to do anything steampunk… unless they ask. Stay tuned.

Also, Steampunk World’s Fair has also been gracious enough to offer Jha and I a return to New Jersey in May 2011. So we’ll be premiering NEW panels there… more info about those to come.


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#25 Asians in the Americas

Newspaper illustration from a performance of “The Coming Man” at the The Principal Chinese Theatre in San Francisco, California, in the 1880s. Audience members in the picture include Chinese men and women (one holding an infant) in fancy dress, a vendor holding a tray, and others watching the play. Image courtesy of Berkeley University.

May is recognized in the US as Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month (also known as Asian/Asian-American History Month). Asians have a long history in the Americas, starting with the first Chinese and Japanese immigrants to the United States in the mid-1800s (or, going even earlier, research has argued that Chinese explorer Zheng He could have arrived in America in 1421 before Columbus). But there has also been 19th-century Asian immigration to Canada, Mexico, Peru, Brazil and Cuba as well.

Thus, the experience of Asians in the Americas during the Victorian Era was diverse and complex; below are four glimpses into Asian (and American) history.

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Beyond Victoriana Special Edition Odds & Ends #4

I’m preparing for some big events in May (like co-hosting two panels at the Steampunk World’s Fair. Will you be coming? It’s bound to be INTELLECTUALLY STIMULATING and IMMENSELY ENTERTAINING.) Thus, the next post will be delayed. But never fear, I have some nifty reads that have been building up in my inbox for you to check out after the cut.

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#6: A Chat about Brazilian SteamPunk with Bruno Accioly

Conselho SteamPunk

Awhile back, a couple of readers tipped me off to an interesting article they saw on Wired.com about Those Irrepressible Brazilian Steampunks. I read Bruno Accioly’s letter to Bruce Sterling and was immediately struck by his enthusiasm and ambition in establishing a steampunk social network in Brazil. So I contacted Bruno, one of the founders of Conselo SteamPunk, to talk about this exciting venture and what steampunk is like where he’s from.
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