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Changing Race: Latinos, the Census and the History of Ethnicity

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Overview

Latinos are the fastest growing population group in the United States.Through their language and popular music Latinos are making their mark on American culture as never before. As the United States becomes Latinized, how will Latinos fit into America's divided racial landscape and how will they define their own racial and ethnic identity?

Through strikingly original historical analysis, extensive personal interviews and a careful examination of census data, Clara E. Rodriguez shows that Latino identity is surprisingly fluid, situation-dependent, and constantly changing. She illustrates how the way Latinos are defining themselves, and refusing to define themselves, represents a powerful challenge to America's system of racial classification and American racism.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A timely addition. . . the author offers a competent, nontechnical overview of the issues concerning how our largest minority fits into this nation's bipolar black-white racial paradigm. . . . Rodriguez examines how Lationos may be changing that long-dominant paradigm."

-American Journal of Sociology,

"A timely work...Rodriguez does make a convincing argument that Latino self-identity is fluid and constantly changing."

-Journal of American Ethnic History,

"Rodriquez'a account is a solid introduction to the dynamic complexity of American ethnic life."

-Ethnic and Racial Studies, Vol. 26, No. 2,

"Much of the current dialogue on race does not sufficiently interrogate its meaning. In marked contrast, Clara E. Rodriguez offers a stunning example of racial formation by illustrating how Latino identities are formed and transformed in dynamic engagement with state definitions. She reveals the gap between state imposed categories and group self-definition; the dramatic distinctions between U.S. and Latin American concepts of race; and the political claims advanced through the Census. Best of all, she provides a rich sense of how individuals constantly negotiate the prevailing terrain of racial meanings."

-Michael Omi,University of California, Berkeley

Journal of American History
"As immigration and intermarriage continue to increase diversity in the United States, greater effort is needed to improve our understanding of how people view themselves and others. This book takes an important step in that direction."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814775479
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2000
  • Series: Critical America Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 283
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Clara E. Rodriguez is Professor of Sociology at Fordham University's College at Lincoln Center. She is the author of numerous books and has been Visiting Professor at Columbia University, MIT, and Yale University. She has also been a Visiting Scholar at the Russell Sage Foundation and a Senior Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History. She was previously the Dean of Fordham University's College of Liberal Studies.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2000

    This book enlightens and makes people be aware about the current and past issues of race and ethinicy in the U.S.

    I would recommend this book to every single person who lives in the United States.America underwent huge changes during the last 100 years, that people need to know about. Through vivid insight of the Census,presented by Clara Rodriguez, we learn about different classifications of people and the development of the bipolar structure; between the whites and other races. However, this bipolar structure is resisted by Latinos, who come in diffrent types of color and range from being white to black.GREAT READ THAT REALLY INFORMED ME OF THE CURRENT AND PAST HISTORY OF ETHNIC MINORITIES IN THE UNITED STATES!!!!

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