Pub. Date:
New York University Press
West Indian in the West: Self Representations in a Migrant Community

West Indian in the West: Self Representations in a Migrant Community

by Percy Hintzen, Anthony Lewis


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780814735992
Publisher: New York University Press
Publication date: 11/01/2001
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.11(d)

About the Author

Percy C. Hintzen is Associate Professor and Chair of African American Studies and former Director of Peace and Conflict Studies, University of California at Berkeley He is the author of The Costs of Regime Survival: Racial Mobilization, Elite Domination, and Control of the State in Guyana and Trinidad.

Table of Contents

1Identity, Arena, and Performance: West Indians in San Francisco Bay9
2Performance and Meaning in West Indian Immigrant Identity: Public Displays of Self-Representation34
3Promoters of Popular Culture55
4Negotiating the Black-White Dichotomy: Marrying an African American88
5Negotiating the Black-White Dichotomy: Images of African Americans111
6Constructing an Immigrant Identity: Notions of a Permanent Foreigner163
Epilogue: The Construction of Identity188
About the Author201

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"An extremely interesting work, addressing an important area—the constructed nature of ethnicity. Ethnicity is, in part, a performance—something one does as well as something one is. The West Indians' unique and complex relationship with other African Americans . . . and the question of how and under what circumstances ethnic distinctiveness is emphasized and under what circumstances it is minimized is fascinating. The Bay area context, in which West Indians are vastly outnumbered by African Americans, makes for a new and different take on these issues."

-Philip Kasinitz,author of Caribbean New York: Black Immigrants and the Politics of Race

"Hintzen's detailed anaylsis of West Indians in the western United States opens the door to new understandings of race class boundaries and their role in maintaining social hierarchies and imbalanced social relationships among racial and ethnic groups. This richly textured ethnography will be required reading for scholars on race and immigration for years to come."

-Pedro Noguera,Harvard University Graduate School of Education

"Percy Hintzen has given us an intimate and richly textured portrait of West Indian community and identity in northern California. An important scholar of both global politics and American ethnic studies, Hintzen . . . deftly demonstrates how West Indians navigate the precarious terrain of race and racialization in U.S. society by negotiating their distance from African America."

-Elaine Kim,University of California, Berkeley

"Percy Hintzen's book has made me see so many things afresh. After reading West Indian in West, I see not only life in San Francisco differently, but also life in Brooklyn and in Silicon Valley differently. With subtlety and sensitivity, Hintzen makes us smarter about diasporas, racisms, class aspirations, marriages and public performances in contemporary America. This is an important book."

-Cynthia Enloe,author of Bananas, Beaches, and Bases

"An important contribution to discussions of identity construction in a globalized world and will be enjoyed and debated by students of ethnic studies."

-Library Journal

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