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Hispanic Americans Diversity - Essay Example

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Hispanic Americans Diversity

"Passing" was the name of the game. In the words of Berkeley cultural psychologist George De Vos, we have all noticed now the "passing of passing" (De Vos 1992).
Latinos today are players in social spaces where racial and ethnic category have high-stakes political and economic implications. The largest wave of immigration in U. S. history-the wave responsible for the current Latino-ization of the country took place subsequent to the great struggles of the civil rights movement.
Cuban Latinos, especially mainland Puerto Ricans and immigrant Brazilians, have been depicted as paradigmatic examples of groups engaged in deep transnationalism, an analytic concept that is often used to refer to economic, political, and cultural strategies articulated by diasporic peoples across national spaces (Basch, Schiller, and Blanc 1995; Smith and Guarnizo 1998). Significant numbers of Puerto Ricans and Brazilians are said to lead dual lives engaging in double consciousness, cultivating dual loyalties, living serially between their islands and the mainland. Studies, suggest that Brazilians immigrants have developed political, economic, and cultural adaptations that involve high levels of transnationalism. They remit large sums of money to their homeland, they remain substantially engaged in political processes there, and they return periodically with their children to nourish social and cultural ties in their island home. Research on mainland Puerto Ricans suggests a slightly different version of this general transnational dynamic. Although they are less likely than Brazilians to send dollars to the island, mainland Puerto Ricans remain socially, culturally, and at times politically involved in island affairs (Torre, Vecchini, and Burgo 1994).
Whereas, Mexican immigration to the United States has over the last two decades undergone a profound transformation. Historically, U. S. immigration policies, market forces, and the social practices of Mexican immigrants did not encourage their long-term integration into American society (Surez-Orozco, C., and M. Surez-Orozco 2001). A sojourner pattern of largely male-initiated circular migration, characterized by efforts to earn dollars during a specific season, dominated the Mexican experience for decades into the 1980s (Durand 1998). After concluding their seasonal work, large numbers of Mexicans returned south of the border, eventually to resume the cycle the following year. In that context, Mexican immigrants engaged in dual lives, displaying the kinds of proto-transnational behaviors now more fully developed among Cuban Latinos. Like Puerto Ricans and Brazilians today, the Mexican immigrants of yesterday lived both "here" and "there."
Today, Latinos are the largest ethnic group in the Catholic Church. In 1990 they constituted 35 percent of all U. S. Catholics, up from 28 percent in 1980. In Florida, Texas, and New Mexico, Latinos make up over two thirds of the Catholic population. In 1990 there were twelve archdioceses that had over 50 percent Latino membership and twenty-seven in which 25-50 percent of parishioners was Latino. Whereas the numbers of Euro American Catholics fall annually, the number of ...Show more

Summary

The Latino population of the United States is a highly heterogeneous population that defies easy generalizations. At the political level, the pan ethnic construct has emerged as significant. Latinos are entering the United States in large numbers at a time when the nation's ethos is conquered by a "culture of multiculturalism" (Surez-Orozco and Surez-Orozco 2001; Friedman, L…
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Hispanic Americans Diversity essay example
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