Just Neighbors?: Research on African American and Latino Relations in the United States

Russell Sage Foundation
Free sample

Blacks and Latinos have transformed the American city—together these groups now constitute the majority in seven of the ten largest cities. Large-scale immigration from Latin America has been changing U.S. racial dynamics for decades, and Latino migration to new destinations is changing the face of the American south. Yet most of what social science has helped us to understand about these groups has been observed primarily in relation to whites—not each other. Just Neighbors? challenges the traditional black/white paradigm of American race relations by examining African Americans and Latinos as they relate to each other in the labor market, the public sphere, neighborhoods, and schools. The book shows the influence of race, class, and received stereotypes on black-Latino social interactions and offers insight on how finding common ground may benefit both groups. From the labor market and political coalitions to community organizing, street culture, and interpersonal encounters, Just Neighbors? analyzes a spectrum of Latino-African American social relations to understand when and how these groups cooperate or compete. Contributor Frank Bean and his co-authors show how the widely held belief that Mexican immigration weakens job prospects for native-born black workers is largely unfounded—especially as these groups are rarely in direct competition for jobs. Michael Jones-Correa finds that Latino integration beyond the traditional gateway cities promotes seemingly contradictory feelings: a sense of connectedness between the native minority and the newcomers but also perceptions of competition. Mark Sawyer explores the possibilities for social and political cooperation between the two groups in Los Angeles and finds that lingering stereotypes among both groups, as well as negative attitudes among blacks about immigration, remain powerful but potentially surmountable forces in group relations. Regina Freer and Claudia Sandoval examine how racial and ethnic identity impacts coalition building between Latino and black youth and find that racial pride and a sense of linked fate encourages openness to working across racial lines. Black and Latino populations have become a majority in the largest U.S. cities, yet their combined demographic dominance has not abated both groups' social and economic disadvantage in comparison to whites. Just Neighbors? lays a much-needed foundation for studying social relations between minority groups. This trailblazing book shows that, neither natural allies nor natural adversaries, Latinos and African Americans have a profound potential for coalition-building and mutual cooperation. They may well be stronger together rather than apart.
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About the author

EDWARD TELLES is professor of sociology at Princeton University and vice president of the American Sociological Association. MARK Q. SAWYER is associate professor of African American studies and political science at the University of California, Los Angeles, and is also director of the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Politics. GASPAR RIVERA-SALGADO is project director at the UCLA Center for Labor Research and Education.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Russell Sage Foundation
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Published on
Sep 1, 2011
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Pages
388
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ISBN
9781610447539
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Black Studies (Global)
Social Science / Ethnic Studies / General
Social Science / Ethnic Studies / Hispanic American Studies
Social Science / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Pigmentocracies--the fruit of the multiyear Project on Ethnicity and Race in Latin America (PERLA)--is a richly revealing analysis of contemporary attitudes toward ethnicity and race in Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru, four of Latin America's most populous nations. Based on extensive, original sociological and anthropological data generated by PERLA, this landmark study analyzes ethnoracial classification, inequality, and discrimination, as well as public opinion about Afro-descended and indigenous social movements and policies that foster greater social inclusiveness, all set within an ethnoracial history of each country. A once-in-a-generation examination of contemporary ethnicity, this book promises to contribute in significant ways to policymaking and public opinion in Latin America.

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