Just looking at the Pacific Northwest’s many verdant forests and fields, it may be hard to imagine the intense work it took to transform the region into the agricultural powerhouse it is today. Much of this labor was provided by Mexican guest workers, Tejano migrants, and undocumented immigrants, who converged on the region beginning in the mid-1940s. Of Forests and Fields tells the story of these workers, who toiled in the fields, canneries, packing sheds, and forests, turning the Pacific Northwest into one of the most productive agricultural regions in the country. Employing an innovative approach that traces the intersections between Chicana/o labor and environmental history, Mario Sifuentez shows how ethnic Mexican workers responded to white communities that only welcomed them when they were economically useful, then quickly shunned them. He vividly renders the feelings of isolation and desperation that led to the formation of ethnic Mexican labor organizations like the Pineros y Campesinos Unidos Noroeste (PCUN) farm workers union, which fought back against discrimination and exploitation. Of Forests and Fields not only extends the scope of Mexican labor history beyond the Southwest, it offers valuable historical precedents for understanding the struggles of immigrant and migrant laborers in our own era. Sifuentez supplements his extensive archival research with a unique set of first-hand interviews, offering new perspectives on events covered in the printed historical record. A descendent of ethnic Mexican immigrant laborers in Oregon, Sifuentez also poignantly demonstrates the links between the personal and political, as his research leads him to amazing discoveries about his own family history. www.mariosifuentez.com
The Mexican and Mexican American populations in Oxnard were involved in cultural struggles and negotiations long before Ch¾vez led them in marches and active protests. Curious Unions explores the ways in which the Mexican community forged intriguing partnerships with other ethnic groups within Oxnard in the first half of the twentieth century and the resulting economic exchanges, cultural practices, and labor and community activism. Frank P. Barajas examines how the Oxnard ethnic Mexican population exercised its agency in alliance with other groups and organizations to meet their needs before large-scale protests and labor unions were engaged. Curious Unions charts how the cultural negotiations that took place in the Oxnard ethnic Mexican community helped shape and empower farm labor organizing.
Drawing on extensive archival research, Vargas focuses on the large Mexican American communities in Texas, Colorado, and California. As he explains, the Great Depression heightened the struggles of Spanish speaking blue-collar workers, and employers began to define citizenship to exclude Mexicans from political rights and erect barriers to resistance. Mexican Americans faced hostility and repatriation.
The mounting strife resulted in strikes by Mexican fruit and vegetable farmers. This collective action, combined with involvement in the Communist party, led Mexican workers to unionize. Vargas carefully illustrates how union mobilization in agriculture, tobacco, garment, and other industries became an important vehicle for achieving Mexican American labor and civil rights.
He details how interracial unionism proved successful in cross-border alliances, in fighting discriminatory hiring practices, in building local unions, in mobilizing against fascism and in fighting brutal racism. No longer willing to accept their inferior status, a rising Mexican American grassroots movement would utilize direct action to achieve equality.
Drawing from census data as well as other sources, The Chicano Worker reports on Chicano unemployment, labor-force participation, occupational and industrial distributions of employment, and various indices of earnings. It also deals with such issues as history, family size, health, and culture. The Chicano Worker is likely to open new areas of interest, discussion, and criticism concerning Chicanos in the United States.
In addition to presenting innovative research examining parental beliefs and practices of Latino families from different socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds, authors provide frameworks for identifying the origins of these beliefs and practices, and provide a rich picture of both the values that can be considered Latino and the social and demographic normative and at-risk Latino samples. Finally, methodological and conceptual recommendations for future research on each cited area, as well as the field, are presented.
Along with all men and women, Latinos and Latinas face four choices: retaining a blind loyalty to a romanticized past, assimilating, violating each other, or transforming their ethnic and racial group for the better. This examination of the underlying sacred meaning of the stories of the Latino culture attempts to determine whether these stories are destructive or creative. Now coming of age, la comunidad Latina, previously wounded by assimilation, continues to tell its story in art, literature, history, and religion so that the world may, perhaps for the first time, see its personal, political, historical, and sacred faces. The most important story now being lived is that of Latina women and Latino men who are making choices that will determine the ultimate meaning of a new Latino culture in this nation.
Counseling Latinos and la familiaprovides an integrated approach to understanding Latino families and increasing competency for counselors and other mental health professional who work with Latinos and their families. It provides essential background information about the Latino population and the family unit, which is so central to Latino culture, including the diversity of various Spanish-speaking groups, socio-political issues, and changing family forms. The book also includes practical counseling strategies, focusing on the multicultural competencies approach.