Battling for Human Rights and Social Justice: A Latina/o Critical Race Media Analysis of Latina/o Student Youth Activism in the Wake of 2006 Anti-Immigrant Sentiment
Veronica Vélez, Lindsay Perez Huber, Corina Benavides Lopez, Ariana de la Luz, and Daniel Solórzano
Citation: Social Justice Vol. 35, No. 1 (2008): 7-27. Buy PDF
Vélez and colleagues provide theoretical and practical insight into the media framing of the Latina/o student mobilizations that took place immediately before and after the mass demonstrations that occurred throughout the country against H.R. 4437 in the spring of 2006. Prevailing media images of the demonstrations offer a variety of mostly negative portrayals of these Latina/o students. Utilizing a Latina/o Critical Race Theory framework, they argue that contrary to what these images claimed, the majority of Latina/o student activism critically expressed concerns about rising and persistent anti-immigrant sentiment and were motivated by emancipatory goals. Based on a content analysis of print news media, they contend that these forms of Latina/o student activism critically responded to a broader context of racism, violence, and dehumanization that is committed daily against these students, their families, and communities. In this way, their actions sought a societal commitment to human rights and, thus, a more inclusive understanding of social justice that addresses racist nativism, as materialized in the anti-immigrant actions and sentiments that surround the current immigration debate. They also highlight documented forms of activism by Latina/o youth within larger pro-immigrant mobilizations as a way to demonstrate the wide array of activism that took place and to provide a deeper theoretical understanding of youth activism for social justice in the contemporary time. Vélez and co-authors ultimately discuss how national institutions legitimize and subjugate forms of citizenship.
Key words: Latina/o Critical Race Theory, youth activism, immigration, racist nativism, media analysis, H.R. 4437
Transnational and Transgenerational Latina/o Cultural Citizenship Among Kindergarteners, Their Parents, and University Students in Utah
Dolores Delgado Bernal, Enrique Alemán, Jr., and Judith Flores Carmona
Citation: Social Justice Vol. 35, No. 1 (2008): 28-49. Buy PDF
Delgado Bernal and colleagues discuss data from a school/university/community educational partnership, which provides spaces for the mainly Latina/o student population and community to initiate a discourse of university attendance beginning in kindergarten. The ongoing anti-immigrant movement in Utah and around the nation provides a backdrop from which to explore the tensions and complexities surrounding cultural and legal citizenship across different generations of these Utah Latinas/os. Presenting participant narratives and drawing upon cultural citizenship studies and Chicana feminist theory, the authors discuss the meanings of citizenship and identity among transnational and transgenerational Latina/o kindergarteners, their parents, and their university mentors. This study analyzes and discusses the participants' negotiation of anti-immigrant discourses and policies, affirmation of pedagogies of cultural citizenship, and contestation of bilingual/bicultural identities. Finally, the authors reframe the traditional definitions of "citizen" and call for employing a Latina/o cultural citizenship concept when working with constituents who struggle for rights in an increasingly anti-immigrant political context.
Key words: cultural citizenship, legal citizenship, transgenerational, transnational, Latina/o college students, Latino parents, Utah
Lessons of Belonging and Citizenship Among Hijas/os de Inmigrantes Mexicanos
Citation: Social Justice Vol. 35, No. 1 (2008): 50-75. Buy PDF
Moreno examines the power associated with conceptions of citizenship offered by U.S.-born university educated daughters and sons of Mexican immigrants living in the borderland areas of California. The author draws on the ethnographic histories of a group of young adults that come to know themselves as citizens in relationship to their family's social, cultural, and legal citizenship. By using a cultural citizenship framework, this study highlights broad lessons about negotiations of citizenship surveillance, straddling multiple citizenship ideologies, and cultural contradictions regarding national citizenship within family. It illustrates that citizenship is not a simple question of being or not being a legal citizen with individual rights. Rather, it emphasizes that citizenship is about the everyday politics surrounding citizenship practices and identity associated with U.S.-Mexican families and community members with varied citizenship statuses.
Key words: belonging, cultural citizenship, college Latinas/os, normalized citizenship, citizenship surveillance, U.S.-Mexican families
Reconciling Research, Rallies, and Citizenship: Reflections on Youth Led Diversity Workshops and Intercultural Alliances
David Alberto Quijada
Citation: Social Justice Vol. 35, No. 1 (2008): 76-90. Buy PDF
Quijada explores how youth activism over anti-immigrant policy H.R. 4437, the Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005, has challenged youth studies scholars to reconceptualize meanings of citizenship. Youth activism surrounding citizenship has led some researchers to ask, "What does it mean to do research and to teach in the area of youth studies when young people who are not participants of our studies walk out of their high schools and demand civic participation?" By blending personal testimony with ethnographic data, Quijada discusses contradictory positions he experienced in writing research that examines how an ethnically diverse group of youth facilitate diversity workshops for other youth. This layered account narrates the methodological and pedagogical challenges Quijada confronted as a youth studies scholar who has come to understand citizenship as intercultural alliances persisting between participants. The article calls into question the positionality and accountability of educational researchers and others concerned with citizenship inequalities experienced by youth in marginalized communities.
Key words: youth, youth culture, intercultural alliances, citizenship
Citizenship Normalizing and White Preservice Social Studies Teachers
Luis Urrieta, Jr., and Michelle Reidel
Citation: Social Justice Vol. 35, No. 1 (2008): 91-108. Buy PDF
This article interrogates the intersection of cultural and civic identities produced in the context of white, middle-class preservice teachers. It draws on theories of whiteness and identity production to examine how a group of preservice teachers constructed their own civic identities along with their vision for citizenship education in the area of social studies. Data revealed that the normalization of citizenship to a white mainstream standard was the basis of these future teachers' production of their civic identities and their practice as civic educators. Given the growing cultural and racial disconnect between our nation's teachers and public school Latino students, these authors argue that the normalization of citizenship must be acknowledged, called into question, and contested by educational researchers and educators.
Key words: citizenship, normalization, white preservice teachers