Latinos: Remaking America

By Marcelo M. Suárez-Orozco; Mariela M. Páez | Go to book overview

Commentary
Gary Orfield

There is very little national attention being devoted to what may be the most decisive set of social choices now being made in the United States. The United States is in the midst of a demographic revolution, which our Census Bureau believes will lead to a Latino population of 100 million people by midcentury. This population, which will be far larger than that of any European country and several times the population of Canada, is growing prodigiously. It is also heavily concentrated in the large metropolitan areas of a huge “postindustrial” society increasingly dominated by “knowledgebased” employment, but it is not connecting effectively with the educational system. Nine-tenths of Latinos lived in metropolitan areas in 2000. Unless this connection is made, the Latino community, which by midcentury will be some three times as large as the present black community, will be severely excluded. In fact, a number of current trends and policy decisions threaten to make a bad situation worse.

In spite of this demographic outlook, there are no plans, no set of policies, and no serious proposals on the table in Washington or in state capitals that most experts believe would have any chance of bringing Latinos into the educational mainstream. It is policy by nonpolicy. None of the goals set for equalizing educational success for minority students by 2000 in the “Goals 2000” legislation, and in the agreement between the president and the governors in 1989, have been realized. In fact, some of the most important gaps between Latinos and non-Hispanic whites and Asians have actually widened during this period. To add insult to injury, state and federal officials have adopted a number of policies very likely to make things even worse (see Chapters 17 and 19 in this volume). Some states have adopted racially polarized referenda, spurred by white fears of the demographic revolution and by political leaders scapegoating the growth

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Latinos: Remaking America
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction - The Research Agenda 1
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Part One - Histories, Migrations, and Communities 39
  • Chapter 1 - Latino History in the New Millennium 45
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 2 - Caribbean Latinos in Historical Perspective 59
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 3 - Miami Cubans 75
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Commentary 93
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 4 - Community Dynamics and the Rise of Street Gangs 97
  • References *
  • Chapter 5 - Gender, Ethnicity, and Race in School and Work Outcomes of Second-Generation Mexican Americans 110
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Chapter 6 - Mutual Transformation 126
  • Notes *
  • Commentary 146
  • Chapter 7 - Latino Religious Life in the United States 150
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Chapter 8 - Mass Public Responses to the “new” Latino Immigration to the United States 165
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Chapter 9 - The Effects of 1996 U. S. Immigration Reform on Communities and Families in Texas, El Salvador, and Mexico 190
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Commentary 202
  • References *
  • Part Two - Health, Families, Languages, Education, and Politics 207
  • Chapter 10 - The Latino Health Research Agenda for the Twenty-First Century 215
  • References *
  • Chapter 11 - Latinos' Access to Employment-Based Health Insurance 236
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Commentary 254
  • Chapter 12 - From Braceros in the Fields to Braceras in the Home 259
  • References *
  • Chapter 13 - Risk and Resilience in Latino Immigrant Families 274
  • References *
  • Chapter 14 - The Plasticity of Culture and Psychodynamic and Psychosocial Processes in Latino Immigrant Families 289
  • References *
  • Commentary 302
  • References *
  • Chapter 15 - Mapping the Research Agenda 306
  • Note *
  • References *
  • Chapter 16 - Latin@ Languages and Identities 321
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Chapter 17 - Guideposts for the Nation 339
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Commentary 359
  • Chapter 18 - The Schooling of Latino Children 362
  • Notes *
  • References 372
  • Chapter 19 - Affirmative Action, X Percent Plans, and Latino Access to Higher Education in the Twenty-First Century 375
  • References *
  • Commentary 389
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 20 - Latino Participation in American Elections 398
  • Note *
  • References *
  • Chapter 21 - Gender and Citizenship in Latino Political Participation 410
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Commentary 430
  • Note *
  • Epilogue - Racial Diversity and Corporate Identity in the Latino Community 435
  • Notes *
  • References *
  • Afterword - American Projections 457
  • Notes *
  • Notes on Contributors 463
  • Index 467
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