Latinos Reshaping American Cities/ American Cities Reshaping Latinos
Recap: New immigration past 30 years a boost for struggling American cities
Case study: Latinos
• Fastest growing ethnic minority.
Passed African-Americans as largest minority group
• ~ 55 million Latinos in the United States, 17% of the population
• By 2030 1 in 4 U.S. residents will be of Hispanic ancestry.
What is a “Latino” or “Hispanic” American?
Debates about categories
• “Hispanic” invented by Fed. Gov in mid 1970s for statistical reasons
“Latino” gained popularity in 1990s
Hispanic - emphasize Spanish language, connection to Spain
Latino emphasize Latin America roots, includes Brazil.
Why is a Latino/Hispanic category important?
(Big debate in Latino Studies)
* Categories are imp’t – data helps gov. and bus. address issues like inequality
(ex: case of France – drawbacks of a colorblind census)
* Unifying “Pan-Latino” category More political power, representation
* Captures ‘latinidad’ - there is a common experience, culture Cons
* Latin America is diverse!
Puerto Rican, Bolivian, Mexican culture – diverse and different.
Most prefer to identify by country of origin (or even region w/in country!)
* ‘Latino’/Hispanic leadership dominated by big three –-- Mexican-Americans, Puerto
Little guys can be overshadowed (ex: Guatemalan-Americans, Dominican-American)
* Not all Latinos speak Spanish as mother tongue
ex: indigenous languages – Zapotec, Nahuatl, Quiché
ex: second, third generation Latinos might not speak Spanish
(unfair to call them “less ‘Hispanic’”)
ex: Brazilian-Americans – not Hispanic, but share a Latino experience
Diverse Latino cities: Which is the “Latino capital”?
Davis: (don’t copy) “Three cities have made claims to be the “capital of Latin America –
Los Angeles New York, and Miami – [but] the recipes of Latindad involve strikingly
different national ingredients.”
• Cuban Miami –
55% of L’s in Miami are Cuban-American.
1960’s refugees flee communist revolution.