Latino Racial Reporting in the US: To Be or Not To Be

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2013-05-12 20:48Z by Steven

Latino Racial Reporting in the US: To Be or Not To Be

Sociology Compass
Volume 7, Issue 5 (May 2013)
pages 390-403
DOI: 10.1111/soc4.12032

Clara E. Rodríguez, Professor of Sociology
Fordham University

Michael H. Miyawaki
Fordham University

Grigoris Argeros, Assistant Professor of Sociology
Mississippi State University

This review focuses on how Latinos report their race. This is an area that has recently experienced a major surge of interest in both government and academic circles. This review of the literature examines how and why Latinos report their race on the census, in surveys and in more qualitative studies. It reviews the vibrant and growing scholarly literature relevant to the questions of the placement—by self or others—of Latinos along the US color line, what determines it and how the Census has coped and is coping with it. We begin with a brief review of the history of Latino classification in the census and then discuss the factors influencing racial reporting. These include national origin and skin color, acculturation and generational status, socioeconomic status, perceived discrimination and identification with others who have experienced actual discrimination, location, and question format. We end with a discussion of the implications of the recent 2010 Alternative Questionnaire Experiment conducted by the census, and conclude with suggestions for future research.

Read or purchase the article here.

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Changing Race: Latinos, the Census and the History of Ethnicity

Posted in Books, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Monographs, Social Science, United States on 2013-05-12 20:35Z by Steven

Changing Race: Latinos, the Census and the History of Ethnicity

New York University Press
July 2000
283 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9780814775479

Clara E. Rodríguez, Professor of Sociology
Fordham University

Latinos are the fastest growing population group in the United States. Through their language and popular music Latinos are making their mark on American culture as never before. As the United States becomes Latinized, how will Latinos fit into America’s divided racial landscape and how will they define their own racial and ethnic identity?

Through strikingly original historical analysis, extensive personal interviews and a careful examination of census data, Clara E. Rodriguez shows that Latino identity is surprisingly fluid, situation-dependent, and constantly changing. She illustrates how the way Latinos are defining themselves, and refusing to define themselves, represents a powerful challenge to America’s system of racial classification and American racism.

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How the United States Racializes Latinos: White Hegemony and Its Consequences

Posted in Anthologies, Books, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Latino Studies, Law, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2012-12-05 23:07Z by Steven

How the United States Racializes Latinos: White Hegemony and Its Consequences

Paradigm Publishers
May 2009
264 pages
6″ x 9″
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-59451-598-9
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-59451-599-6

Edited by

José A. Cobas, Emeritus Professor of Sociology
Arizona State University

Jorge Duany, Professor of Anthropology
University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras

Joe R. Feagin, Ella C. McFadden Professor of Sociology
Texas A&M University

Mexican and Central American undocumented immigrants, as well as U.S. citizens such as Puerto Ricans and Mexican Americans, have become a significant portion of the U.S. population. Yet the U.S. government, mainstream society, and radical activists characterize this rich diversity of peoples and cultures as one group alternatively called “Hispanics,” “Latinos,” or even the pejorative “illegals.” How has this racializing of populations engendered governmental policies, police profiling, economic exploitation, and even violence that afflict these groups?

From a variety of settings—New York, New Jersey, Los Angeles, Central America, Cuba—this book explores this question in considering both the national and international implications of U.S. policy. Its coverage ranges from legal definitions and practices to popular stereotyping by the public and the media, covering such diverse topics as racial profiling, workplace discrimination, mob violence, treatment at border crossings, barriers to success in schools, and many more. It shows how government and social processes of racializing are too seldom understood by mainstream society, and the implication of attendant policies are sorely neglected.


  • List of Figures and Tables
  • Introduction: Racializing Latinos: Historical Background and Current Forms / José A. Cobas, Jorge Duany, and Joe R. Feagin
  • Chapter 1: Pigments of Our Imagination: On the Racialization and Racial Identities of “Hispanics” and “Latinos” / Rubén G. Rumbaut
  • Chapter 2: Counting Latinos in the U.S. Census / Clara E. Rodríguez
  • Chapter 3: Becoming Dark: The Chilean Experience in California, 1848–1870 / Fernando Purcell
  • Chapter 4: Repression and Resistance: The Lynching of Persons of Mexican Origin in the United States, 1848–1928 / William D. Carrigan and Clive Webb
  • Chapter 5: Opposite One-Drop Rules: Mexican Americans, African Americans, and the Need to Reconceive Turn-of-the-Twentieth-Century Race Relations / Laura E. Gómez
  • Chapter 6: Racializing the Language Practices of U.S. Latinos: Impact on Their Education / Ofelia García
  • Chapter 7: English-Language Spanish in the United States as a Site of Symbolic Violence / Jane H. Hill
  • Chapter 8: Racialization among Cubans and Cuban Americans / Lisandro Pérez
  • Chapter 9 Racializing Miami: Immigrant Latinos and Colorblind Racism in the Global City / Elizabeth Aranda, Rosa E. Chang, and Elena Sabogal
  • Chapter 10: Blacks, Latinos, and the Immigration Debate: Conflict and Cooperation in Two Global Cities / Xóchitl Bada and Gilberto Cárdenas
  • Chapter 11: Central American Immigrants and Racialization in a Post-Civil Rights Era / Nestor P. Rodriguez and Cecilia Menjívar
  • Chapter 12: Agency and Structure in Panethnic Identity Formation: The Case of Latino/a Entrepreneurs /Zulema Valdez
  • Chapter 13: Racializing Ethnicity in the Spanish-Speaking Caribbean: A Comparison of Haitians in the Dominican Republic and Dominicans in Puerto Rico / Jorge Duany
  • Chapter 14: Transnational Racializations: The Extension of Racial Boundaries from Receiving to Sending Societies / Wendy D. Roth
  • Contributors
  • Index
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Sociology Professor Chronicles Rising Latino Culture

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Identity Development/Psychology, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2010-11-17 19:59Z by Steven

Sociology Professor Chronicles Rising Latino Culture

Inside Fordham Online
Fordham University
In Focus: Faculty and Research

Patrick Verel

Already the largest minority group in the United States, Latinos will be an even bigger presence in the years to come, according to demographic studies. Clara Rodriguez, Ph.D., professor of sociology in Fordham College at Lincoln Center, is making sure their stories are told.

Through 10 books, dozens of papers and consulting projects with Dora the Explorer and Sesame Street, Rodriguez has developed a deep knowledge about a group that now accounts for 15 percent of the population.

Her analyses of United States census data have resulted in papers such as “Contestations Over Classifications: Latinos, the Census and Race in the United States” (Journal de la Société des Américanistes, 2009) and “Implications and Impact of Race on the Health of Latinos,” a chapter in Health Issues in Latino Males: A Social and Structural Approach (Rutgers University Press, 2010).

As part of her study of census data, Rodriguez cast a critical eye on racial classifications in the decennial censuses. Examining how respondents who identified themselves as Hispanic or Latino reported their race, she found that 40 percent chose “some other race,” and many of them wrote in what is known as a Latino identifier, such as Dominican, Panamanian or Chicano.

This happened in the last three decennial censuses, despite the fact that the census allowed them to choose more than one racial category in the last census…

…“People who could choose more than one race didn’t choose white and black; they still chose the category ‘some other race.’ This 40 percent has increased—I think this time it was 42 percent—even though the Census Bureau has really tried to discourage this response,” she said.

“This raises the question, ‘What is race?’ Science was raising that question. Children of mixed-race families were raising that question. So are people from all over the world who came here with very different identities and are now being folded into one of our five major groups.”…

Read the entire article here.

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