Latin Looks: Images of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. Media

By Clara E. Rodríguez | Go to book overview

PART ONE Latinos on Television and in the News: Absent or Misrepresented

The authors of the three chapters in this section--all excerpted from longer works-- discuss Latino images in the news and television. These chapters have a dual focus: the lack of Latino representation and the misrepresentation of Latino events, characters, and culture. The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) in Chapter 1 and Lichter and Amundson in Chapter 3 use an empirical approach. Their work represents the most systematic, rigorous, and comprehensive examination of Latinos in the media to date. NCLR reviews research on the numbers of Latinos in the media and on their portrayals. Lichter and Amundson examine the portrayal of Hispanic characters on television over time, using the scientific method of content analysis. Their chapter concludes with an update covering the 1994-1995 season. Chapter 2, by Quiroga, is a first-person account, written in 1993 by a veteran Hispanic journalist in Boston, combining analyses of case studies and personal experiences. Together, the three chapters emphasize the impact of underrepresentation and negative portrayals on Latinos, on non-Latinos, and on public policy. Many of the findings discussed in these chapters parallel those in the subsequent section on Latinos and film.


"Not Enuf of It and It's Mostly Bad--and Shrinking"

NCLR finds an all-too-familiar picture of underrepresentation and negative portrayals. NCLR's disturbing conclusions in Chapter 1 are that Latinos are almost invisible in both the entertainment and news media, leaving the nation's second-largest minority "out of the picture." Moreover, when Latinos do appear, they are consistently portrayed more negatively than other racial and ethnic groups. These two problems, underrepresentation and negative portrayals, have been persistent themes in films, in television, and in the news. Study after study reveals the chronic condition of Latino underrepresentation, but even more alarming is the finding that underrepresentation has worsened with time. Beginning with the examination by the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (the Kerner Commission, 1968) of television characters during the 1960s, Hispanics have consistently been the least likely to appear in

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Latin Looks: Images of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. Media
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Illustrations vii
  • Introduction 1
  • Notes 11
  • Part One - Latinos on Television and in the News: Absent or Misrepresented 13
  • Notes 19
  • 1: Out of the Picture 21
  • 2 - Hispanic Voices: is the Press Listening? 36
  • Notes 53
  • 3: Distorted Reality 57
  • Part Two - The Silver Screen: Stories and Stereotypes 73
  • Notes 79
  • 4: Visual Retrospective 80
  • 5: Citizen Chicano 85
  • 6 - Stereotyping in Films in General and of the Hispanic in Particular 104
  • References 119
  • 7 - Chicanas in Film: History of an Image 121
  • Notes 139
  • 8: From Assimilation to Annihilation 142
  • 9: West Side Story 164
  • 10: Keeping It Reel? Films of the 1980s and 1990s 180
  • Part Three - Creating Alternative Images: The Others" Present Themselves" 185
  • 11 - From the Margin to the Center: Puerto Rican Cinema in New York 188
  • Notes 199
  • 12: Unofficial Stories 200
  • 13: Type and Stereotype 214
  • 14 - Two Film Reviews: My Family/Mi Familia and the Perez Family 221
  • 15 - Hispanic-Oriented Media 225
  • Notes 236
  • References 236
  • Part Four - Strategies for Change 239
  • 16 - Promoting Analytical and Critical Viewing 240
  • Notes 247
  • Notes 250
  • Notes 253
  • 17 - Questions and Reflections About the Reading in This Book 254
  • 18: What We Can Do 261
  • References 271
  • About-The Book, and Editor 275
  • About the Contributors 277
  • Index 279
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