A brief sojourn in the development of anthropology conducted by Chicano/a anthropologists in the United States suggests that the currents in transnational and postmodern analysis presently in vogue in anthropology were anticipated by equivalent theoretical and methodological positions held by many of us who had been involved in Chicano Studies. As well, new institutional forms have been inaugurated in anthropology as a direct and indirect result of the experience of participating in and managing Chicano Studies programs and centers. Many of us simultaneously participated in Chicano Studies departments and engaged in graduate programs in anthropology in the late 60's and early 70's. For many of us in California, including Roberto Alvarez, Jose Cuellar, Diego Vigil, Steve Arvizu, Paul Espinosa, Margarita Melville, and myself, our experience teaching the incipient courses in Chicano Studies led us to cross into then non-Chicano territory in place and theory. Cuellar and Vigil worked as ethnographers in Guatemala; Alvarez traced the emergence of Mexicans from lower California to Lemon Grove, Calif.; Arvizu and others were among the first to offer a serious theoretical critique of anthropology in Decolonizing Anthropology (1978), simultaneous to Melville's well recalled patterns of domination in Guatemala. All impacted our rendition of a different kind of anthropology and Chicano Studies. I initially began my work in urban Mexico seeking answers to questions initiated by Chicano Studies. In fact, what is particular to all of this cohort of incipient anthropologists is their experience and engagement in multinational ethnography, processes and analysis, and a "critical cultural" stance from which to engage theory and substantive data and ethnography.
This paper presents an overview of the proceedings at the conference, “Towards a New Chicana/o History,” held at Michigan State University, April 22-23, 1996. The report frames the academic discipline of Chicana/o History as simultaneously a social movement, and presents a 13-point agenda for the discipline as a shared political and academic enterprise. A creative tension is identified between two evolutionary stages of the discipline: the founding stage, invented to challenge mainstream United States historiography and confrontational in nature; and the developmental stage, which retains the traditional belief that Chicana/o History is still marginalized by the mainstream field, but increasingly finds common ground thematically and methodologically with mainstream scholars. To stimulate discussion, participants were sent an essay by Ignacio García, a scholar of the founding stage, who believes that the field is being fatally weakened by scholars who have either lost or never had an “ideological connection with the original premises of Chicano Studies.” Participants were also asked to address one of the following themes: the synergy between Chicana/o and Mexican History; the evolution and future path of Chicana/o History; a comparison of thematic and methodological variations, especially between the Southwest and Midwest; and different perspectives on Chicana/o and Ethnic Studies. The report is divided into thematic sections that summarize the papers presented at the conference. These sections include: “The Historical Background and Evolution of Chicana/o History,” “Competing Versions of Chicana/o History,” “Two Applications of the Term ‘Chicano’,” “Re-inventing Chicana/o History,” and “Research Redefines Chicana/o History.”
The United States is populated by people from most of the nations of the world who represent a diversity of cultures. Throughout its history, this nation has been able to accommodate these populations — some more easily than others — depending on the time and circumstances of their entry to this country. The usual history of an immigrant group (besides those who have been conquered such as the American Indian and the Spanish-speaking) has been that of settlement in urban areas and occupying the lower strata of society; having made an early resolution in favor of acculturation, they have begun the relatively slow process of vertical social mobility.
Juan J. Bustamante
Historically, women’s immigration to the United States has been under studied by social scientists. Men’s migration dominates the migration literature, while women’s migration is relegated to a secondary position. Recently, this skewed pattern is changing; though still, when research focuses on women, there is a tendency for only women scholars to undertake migration and gender studies. Thus, the intent of this paper is to fill a research gap related to gender and migration.
Brian W. McNeill
This paper describes the development of a course in Chicano/Latino Psychology along with the objectives, content, and activities associated with the course. Objectives of the course include examination of the current psychosocial literature related to Chicano/Latino populations, issues of acculturation and ethnic identity, and the relationship of these variables to underutilization of psychological services. Culturally appropriate counseling models and strategies for intervention are also covered. Course content includes: the history of Chicano Psychology, including both Hispanic and Indigenous origins and practices; cultural characteristics and descriptors, including gender roles, Chicana Feminist theory, interpersonal/communication styles, family dynamics, religion/folk beliefs; applied and practice issues associated with the field of Chicano Psychology, including general health care issues, e.g., psychological wellbeing, and underutilization of services, including cultural, geographical, and language barriers; and research issues with Chicano/Latino populations in general, especially in regards to treatment outcome or preference for ethnically similar counselors. The author then describes his experience of encountering and negotiating the academic politics, resistances, and barriers that were placed before him in gaining university approval to teach this course. Based on personal experiences, the author concludes with recommendations for overcoming the maze of academic politics for others who wish to offer similar courses, as well as future trends in designing courses in Chicano/Latino Psychology.
Creation of a university community that is (a) welcoming and culturally-inclusive (i.e., promotes cultural ambience) and (b) where members are committed to promoting cultural ambience to help Chicana/o students academically persist and succeed is essential to the task of retaining Chicana/o students. That is, the cultural beliefs and values of Chicana/o students must be reflected in their different academic and personal environments to the extent that they can succeed in their environments without needing to hide or change their cultural identities (Gloria and Robinson-Kurpius, 1996). For what reasons would institutions of higher education not want to provide culturally-relevant learning environments relevant for all students and faculty? Unfortunately, the answer to this complex question may be partly accounted for by the need of some to control economic, political, and social resources and opportunities. Because the Latino population will increase more quickly than the national growth rate over the next 20 years (Chapa and Valencia, 1993), the school-aged population of Chicana/os will also reflect these demographic changes (Nevárez-La Torre and Hidalgo, 1997). As a result, social, political, and cultural changes within academia are inevitable.
The purpose of this paper is to provide sociodemographic and HIV risk profiles for Mexican/Chicano farmworkers. Data are drawn from both qualitative and quantitative survey research. The author found that at least four major HIV exposure categories increase farmworkers vulnerability to infection: prostitution use, sex between men, needle sharing, and gender-related obstacles. Although Mexican migrant laborers have high knowledge about the major modes of HIV transmission, they also hold many misconceptions about contracting HIV, including mosquito bites, public bathrooms, kissing on the mouth, being coughed on, and giving blood. Mexican migrants used condoms far more often with secondary or occasional sex partners as compared to primary sex partners. The reasons for not using condoms with intimate regular sex partners include: suspicion of infidelity, female partner already using birth control, and couple’s desire to have children. Predictors of condom use include: condom-related social norms, attitudes, and efficacy. Condom efficacy appears to be the central factor in condom use with occasional sex partners. The study recommends to increase proper and consistent condom use with secondary sex partners; communicate basic HIV/AIDS information to Mexican farmworkers in Spanish; develop and deliver focused, single-session interventions given the transient nature of farm work; and deliver intervention messages separately for men and women. The author concludes that culturally competent HIV prevention research and direct services are urgently needed to prevent the high probability of an AIDS epidemic among the Mexican/ Chicano farmworkers.
Manuel Ramirez III
This paper considers the need for a Chicano/Mestizo Psychology. Specifically, this is due for three reasons: (a) mainstream psychology does not reflect the psychological reality of Latinos and other peoples of color; (b) mainstream psychology does not embody the spirit of the movement for social justice characterized by the African American, Chicano, and Native American-Indian civil rights movements; and (c) Mexican psychology and established Latin American psychology are not based on the socio-historical-political realities of Latinos in the Americas, but are mere translations of Anglo/Western European psychology from English into Spanish. This paper presents the historical origins, the tenets, and a summary of recent developments in Chicano/Mestizo psychology. It argues for the need to continue the struggle to ensure that a psychological science that is truly Mestizo and multicultural at its core continues to evolve and to survive.
When the Mexican American family’s attempt to heal a troubled member fails, either by seeking out Western medicine, psychotherapy, or the saints, curanderismo may be considered as a viable alternative form of intervention. However, a psychologist/psychiatrist trying to “sell” their system of treatment and disease classification may thwart opportunity for efficacious care. Some challenges with traditional psychiatry and psychology are rooted in the nosological system used for assessment, diagnosis and treatment recommendations. Although the symptom profile for a culture-bound syndrome may mimic the clinical profile of a “standard” DSM disorder, the sequel of the disorder as well as the diagnostic, assessment, and treatment protocol may differ significantly. The DSM-IV has made strides in terms of mentioning some cultural syndromes; however, differential diagnosis, etiological considerations, and appropriate treatment protocols continue to be a challenging theme for mental health care providers. This paper seeks to overview some of the cultural stepping-stones in the current classification system. Issues of family support, curanderismo, and differential diagnoses will also be discussed.
Ester Ruiz Rodriguez
Abuse directed at women by male partners has become recognized as a major health problem. Certain characteristics in the Latino culture have been thought to influence the occurrence of violence in the family. This paper is a summary of the main findings from the author’s research with Dr. Susan Mattson on domestic violence perpetuated against pregnant Latinas. That research triangulated quantitative (survey of 450 Latinas) and qualitative (focus groups) methods and used data on prevalence of domestic violence collected in three sites (rural U.S., urban U.S., and Mexico). The study found that although the abuse prevalence for the total sample was only 8.8%, significant differences existed between the three sites, with the highest abuse rate found in the U.S. rural site (17.5%), followed by the Mexican site (10.7%), and the lowest found in the U.S. urban site (3.8%). Studying the association between domestic abuse, acculturation level, and self-esteem revealed only acculturation to be a significant predictor of abuse. Cultural factors enabling abuse were identified through focus groups included use of alcohol, staying in abusive relationships for the good of children or economic dependence, family history of violence or abuse, husbands’ infidelity, and jealousy. The paper concludes with some considerations for service providers and researchers as they struggle with the issue of domestic violence in the 21st Century.
This paper outlines the context of injustice in Chicano families and offers research-based strategies for promoting justice. Moreover, this analysis addresses the need for a paradigm shift in the study of violence in the lives of Chicana/os. Racism inflicts pain and discrimination wounds the soul. The problem of family violence can be reduced if researchers understand the particularities of the Chicano experience and deconstructs the subjective experience of victimization. As such, a justice-based model of research and practice is proposed which situates social, familial, and interpersonal violence. This model is derived from a 3-year study of Chicanos and Latinos whose life narratives contest oppression and re-tell stories of survival and hope.
Dionicio Nodin Valdes
It is very important to insert Chicana and Chicano Studies scholarship into global examinations of history and current events. While there are occasional discussions of the topic, our understanding of Chicanas/Chicanos in global perspectives tends to be quite limited. Most of our literature is still dominated by local or Southwestern regional perspectives.
This paper describes results from interviews with Mexican American children in grades 2-12 and from interviews with their parents about their developmental model (ethnic perspective-talking abil¬ity). It focuses on children’s responses to questions about ethnic pride (why someone would not like being Mexican American) and internalized racism (why they like being Mexican American). The research suggested four developmental levels in their responses to these questions (physical, literal, social, and group perspectives). At Level 0, the Physicalistic and Observable Perspective of Ethnicity, there is an awareness of race, but not of the nonobserv¬able characteristics associated with ethnicity. At Level 1, the Literal Perspective of Ethnicity, there is a beginning understanding of some of the relatively permanent, nonobservable aspects of ethnicity and a conception of the heritage or ancestry components of ethnicity. At Level 2, the Nonliteral and Social Perspective of Ethnicity, comes an awareness of subtle aspects associated with ethnicity and integration of everyday, mundane social experiences related to ethnicity and awareness of ethnic prejudice. Level 3, the Group Perspective of Ethnicity, has an awareness of the impact of pervasive experiential influences associated with ethnicity and ethnic group consciousness.
This paper considers the mental health consequences of internal migration within the United States on Mexican-origin immigrants and migrants. Mexican-origin immigration, and transnational and migratory movements into the U.S. and within the United States have a long, cyclical history that is associated with employment opportunities, particularly in the agricultural industry. Although the immigrant and migrant experience can be enormously stressful, the mental health consequences have very limitedly been studied. Although it might be expected to find higher rates of mental health problems and disorders in the migrant and immigrant populations, the opposite seems to be the case based on a large, well-controlled study using a highly respected, reliable, and valid cross-cultural measure of mental health — namely the Composite International Diagnostic Inventory (CIDI). What is of concern is that mental health problems in immigrants and settled-out migrants seem to increase along with increased residency in the U.S. The immigrant and migrant may be attracted to come to the U.S. to work and improve his/her educational status and standard of living in accordance with the “American Dream,” but the long-term effects of that decision may prove to have, at least for some, an enormously stressful and detrimental impact.
Literature suggests that clinical depression is a major public health problem. Latinos are significantly at high risk for depression and in need of culturally-responsive mental health services. Conventional self-report depression assessment methods display limited predictive power. Fortunately, computer-assisted assessment methods off er alternatives to overcome the psychometric and cultural limitations of self-report measures. Most importantly, computerized speech recognition promises to enhance the early and accurate detection of depressed mood and symptoms. The author developed, tested, and evaluated several bilingual computerized speech recognition (voice-interactive) depression screening programs that verbally interviewed English and Spanish speakers using the Center for Epidemiological Studies - Depression scale (CES - D). The bilingual computer programs were evaluated for psychometric properties and the relationship of depression levels to demographics, acculturation, and speech behavior. Th e studies provided evidence that the bilingual voice-interactive speech recognition applications were generally feasible to administer, reliable, val-id, and equivalent (means and variabilities) to standard interview (face-to-face and paper-and-pencil) methods. Th e English- and Spanish-speaking samples positively rated the automated interviews. The findings suggested that the applications were culturally and linguistically viable tools for screening depression. Th e potential of the analysis of speech behavior and voice characteristics for accurately detecting depression among Chicanos/Latinos is discussed.
Elizabeth M. Vera
This presentation describes the content of interviews conducted with Chicano children, adolescents, and their families who reside in an urban community and attend local schools. The goal of these interviews was to have the community identify aspirations it had for the children, barriers, which may impede progress toward these goals, and resources both available and needed, which would serve to enhance community life. The importance of the family, relationships, issues of personal safety, and the school as a central component of the community were among the topics discussed in the interviews. Areas of consensus and divergence among the various participants are highlighted and the implications for prevention planning are discussed.
Roger Horowitz & Mark Miller
This paper seeks to provide an overview of and background to the integration questions arising from the immigrant influx of the 1990's. It is based on interviews conducted over the summer of 1997, and newspaper reports, books, and documents pertaining to the poultry-processing industry and immigration to the U.S. respectively. The focus of the research has been upon Georgetown and environs in Delaware to provide insights into broader changes affecting the Delmarva peninsula. The paper is comprised of five segments: first, an overview of the poultry-processing industry in the region and its growing use of immigrant workers; second, a discussion of the dynamics of the immigrant influx of the 1990's; third, a sketch of the immigrant population and its impact on the Georgetown; fourth, implications of this case study for federal immigration policy; and fifth, discussion of state and local immigrant integration measures.
The author uses a conceptual map to guide readers through the issues and approaches that pertain to immigration research. She notes that in sociology the pattern of immigration research is clear and the study of immigrants is closely linked to the beginning of social science in America. Sociologists at the turn of the century were concerned with the impact immigration had on the lives of immigrants and with the integration outcomes of those who arrived on its shores. Such outcomes were usually conceptualized as acculturation and assimilation – as becoming like the dominant population, which at the turn of the century clearly meant conforming to Anglo-Saxon ways. Latinos were remarkably absent from such studies. Immigrants bring a whole host of social resources with them (their social class, education, occupations, culture, motivation, values) from another society, and their outcomes in American society are a function of three types of factors. They are: 1) the initial social resources of class, culture, education, values; 2) the nature of their migration (were they political or economic immigrants, victims of genocide, or “brain drain” professional immigrants); and 3) the social context that greeted them. That is, the amount of opportunity available to them in the new society (in the jobs they can find in sunrise or sunset industries, in the particular cities in which they settled, in the amount of discrimination they faced).
As a composer, I have often found myself struggling with musical ideas, or compositional problems, for a long time and to find the elusive solution listening to a "non-classical" composition. The opposite struck me as I was listening to a couple of Eddie Palmieri's compositions, like Adoración (composed in 1973), and I wondered why the avant garde musical movement in Puerto Rico, during the late 60's and 70's, never acknowledged this fine piece of Salsa and Latin Jazz, or incorporated its innovations. During the time I started researching turn-of-the-century Puerto Rican music social history, these situations emerged in my inquiry as questions. Why, if musical practices coexist in the same social context, do innovations in particular genres seem not to affect one another? In the case of Puerto Rico in particular, and the Caribbean in general, I learned that different genres and musical traditions were performed by the same nucleus of musicians (including composers), though, popular and classical compositions seemed impermeable to each other.2 The impermeability of these two genres is expressed in the convention of regarding both as being "together" or equal as cultural activities and in their social functionality, but thinking that for some intrinsic value they are meant to be segregated, or not scrambled. That impermeability is what I would like to explore in this paper.
The development of Latino studies over the past 25 years has focused on the examination, analysis, and expansion of the knowledge base of Latino origin persons and communities in the U.S.. Within the academy, questions of legitimacy as a focus of scholarly inquiry were confronted by Latino Studies scholars. While, the development of Latino Studies has established its tradition to include systematic analysis of the Latino experiences with a dimension of the application of the knowledge for social change and empowerment of the Latino community. This paper portrays the development of Latino Studies, particularly in the realm of politics, power, and policy. In this discussion, three themes will be developed: a) nature and development of Latino Studies over the past 25 years; b) development and impact of Latino scholars on the Political Science profession; and c) the impact of Latino Studies scholarship on the discipline of Political Science. This paper was prepared for the Julian Samora Research Institute's conference on Transforming the Social Sciences through Latino Studies held at Michigan State University, April, 1997.
This paper presents a preliminary exploration of analysis of feature films across ethnic lines through a comparison of Latino and Asian American film narratives. Given that these two ethnic groups have significant commonalities as well as important divergences, we should expect such analysis to turn up both similarities and differences in the two film traditions. Both groups, for example, occupy the status of linguistic minorities in the United States. At the same time, their histories and the manner in which they became incorporated into this country vary considerably. Among the commonalities are: the practice of putting minority characters center stage; the concern with countering traditional stereotypes; the critiquing of racist and ethnocentric patterns in the society; wrestling with issues of structural and cultural assimilation; and a tendency to see the country and culture of origin as sources of strength. There is, however, some indication from this preliminary comparison that there are some differences between Latino and Asian-American filmmakers in their attitudes toward acculturation. The Latino films seem to take a somewhat harder line on this issue, with greater emphasis given to a stance of rejecting or resisting incursions by mainstream cultural patterns. If this generalization turns out to be valid—and it must remain highly tentative at this point—it may be related to differences in the timing of immigration flows, or to the greater geographic proximity of the Latino homelands.
Willie Colón is a famous, world renowned Puerto Rican salsa singer from New York City who has maintained a never-compromising, radical, oppositional voice for 30 years. In Por Eso Canto (That's Why I Sing), a 1993 recording, Willie Colón provides his most powerful and explicit explanation of how he has come to accept his political responsibilities as a singer. In general, Por Eso Canto can be seen as Willie Colón's critique of those who do not or cannot recognize the transformative, emancipatory possibilities of their work and of their cultural practices. Since the late 1960's, Willie Colón has been an ardent critic of musicians who define and perform Salsa music as just another form of individual or social entertainment, rather than as a political, or cultural project. When you listen to his music and when you read his interviews in magazines and newspapers, you are most likely to find Willie Colón exposing the hypocrisy embedded in music, which detaches music from the most important political issues and conditions facing Puerto Ricans and other Latina/o people in the United States, Latin America, and the Caribbean.
This paper considers the ways in which Latina/o scholarship has changed the social science disciplines and provides an overview of some of the important contributions in terms of this research. More specifically, this paper examines several revisionist movements which stress the importance of ethnography and ethnographic approaches in Chicano Studies. To this end, the author provides a review of Chabram’s (1990) work on oppositional ethnography, Chabrán’s (1990; 1992) critical review of “rhetorical anthropology”, especially with respect to Rosaldo’s Culture and Truth (1986), and lastly, provides an overview of Carlos Vélez-Ibáñez’s (1996) most recent work, Border Visions.
Refugio Rochin & Elaine Allensworth
In this report, we examine the processes affecting the rates of concentration, or “Latinization,” of rural communities in California. These processes include the changing demographics of both Latinos and non-Latino Whites, between and within communities. We also examine the extent to which Latino concentration and White exodus correlate with declining socio-economic conditions. Our analysis is based on data collected on over 280 California communities, covering the demographic and economic changes that have occurred in each community between 1980 and 1990. We also apply regression analysis to determine how changes in ethnic composition affect socio-economic conditions. In addition, we incorporate more recent information from a qualitative study of four communities in Fresno and Tulare Counties. This information comes from focus groups and interviews with local leaders in our selected communities from which we derive a “qualitative sense” of why people move and what people consider to be the changing socio-economic conditions of their respective communities. Altogether, we combine information from both the quantitative “macro” perspective with the qualitative “micro” perspectives, to understand the determinants of Latino concentration, White exodus, and the notions people have about community conditions. The article concludes by discussing policy implications of this research, as well as implications for future research.
Latina/o Studies was recognized as a formal field of study in the late 1960’s in the Chicano Southwest and in Puerto Rican New York. The origins of the various Chicano and Puerto Rican Studies programs at that time lay less in a slow evolution of scholarly interests than in the urgent demands of angry students and a few faculty members who insisted that universities begin to meet the educational needs of Latina/os. In addition to the concerns of activists, intellectual issues were of critical importance to sociologists who were among the founding fathers and mothers of these programs. The study of race and ethnicity has been a major specialty within American sociology for the past century, but in the 1960’s few sociologist who were not directly involved with Latina/os knew or cared about them. This should not be too surprising, since almost all sociologists at that time were white. There is a dramatic difference between the ways in which sociologists conceptualized Latina/os before and after the rise of Latina/os studies. The earlier paradigms, which emphasized assimilation, were alienating to a number of Latina/os, as the personal documents of several sociologists indicate. One of the great strengths of Latina/os studies is its interdisciplinary nature, the interaction of economists, anthropologists, political scientists, and humanists working together with sociologists on topics of high priority to Latina/o studies.