New PDF release: How did you get to be Mexican?: a white brown man's search

By Kevin Johnson

This compelling account of racial id takes a detailed examine the query who's a Latino? and determines the place people of combined Latino-Anglo historical past healthy into the racial dynamics of the us. The son of a Mexican American mom and an Anglo father, Kevin Johnson has spent his existence within the borderlands among racial identities. during this insightful booklet, he makes use of his stories as a combined Latino-Anglo to ascertain problems with range, assimilation, race kin, and affirmative motion in modern the United States.

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Extra info for How did you get to be Mexican?: a white brown man's search for identity

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A hot plate in my room allowed me to cook cheap, if not particularly tasty or nutritious, meals. Dinty Moore beef stew and Spam became staples. I could probably have eaten better on my budget, but I was tight on time as well as on cash. A mixture of canned corn and pork and beans filled me up. So did popcorn after a long night of studying. Cheese left on my windowsill in the winter stayed cold, often frozen. My one-cup coffee maker became a crucial study aid. My one weekly splurge was the Friday night double cheeseburger special at Charlie's on Massachusetts Avenue, a few short blocks from the law school (a definite advantage in the cold Boston winters).

Since childhood, I had loved to watch boxing. When I was growing Page 27 up, boxing was one of the few sports venues where Latinos were common. My father had taken me as a boy to see one of Bobby Chacon's first fights at the Forum in Los Angeles. Chacon, later known for his no-holds-barred style, became a hero among Mexican Americans in Los Angeles and later Sacramento, though he ultimately ended up destitute and psychologically disabled. I also rooted for Roberto Duran, a Panamanian, in his fights with African American Sugar Ray Leonard.

Assimilation and the Mexican American Experience," in the California Law Review 85: 1259 (1997) and published concurrently in La Raza Law Journal 10: 173 (1998). Thanks to the California Law Review for giving me permission to publish this material and to the student editors of both journals who improved the article. For a variety of reasons, I have not found it particularly easy to write this book. Parts of my life have been painful for me to relive, much less to describe for the world to see.

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