New Identities in the New Ethnic Politics The Rise of “Pan-ethnicity”

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					Identities in the New Ethnic
          Politics:
The Rise of “Pan-ethnicity”


     Political Science 61 /
   Chicano/Latino Studies 64
        October 9, 2007
       Today’s Topic

         Pan-ethnicity:
The Final Pillar of Contemporary
        Minority Politics
                    Pan-Ethnicity
 Definition – an ethnic identity defined by region,
  not country, of origin
   Examples—Asian American or Latino
   U.S. ethnicities traditionally understood in national terms
 Intergroup cooperation among multiple national-
  origin groups
 Political – building a political agenda or movement
  around this regional identity and shared policy
  needs
               General Rule 1:
         U.S. Ethnic Identities Fluid
   Immigrants learn U.S. conceptions of their identity
       19th Century European immigrants immigrated with sub-
        national/regional identities … and, became “national
        ethics” from newly forming countries
       Institutions (church, politics, neighborhood) reinforced
        national identities
   Meaning and racial conception of European national
    identities changed over time
   Exception – African migrants to slavery had most
    national or regional roots taken from them and
    were always understood racially
General Rule 2: Ethnic Identities
     Diminish Over 2nd/3rd
         Generations
   Intermarriage quickly blurs “pure” national
    origin categories
   Other identities blur ethnic distinctions
       Religion
       Race
       Ideology
       Immigrant generation
   In other words, local institutions see
    diminished ability to maintain identities
                   At Least Until
                 Contemporary Era
   Immigration from high sending countries
    slows/stops after 20-30 years
       Allows the 2nd/3rd generation to reshape national
        origin identity to ethnic identity
   In current era, however, Mexican
    immigration high since the 1950s
       Several other national-origin groups will soon see
        a third generation
             General Rule 3: Counting
               is Highly Contested
   Census inconsistent in measuring race and ethnicity
       Race and ethnicity are socially constructed, so no
        consistent understanding of categories
       Generally behind mass practices
       Ethnic group leaders have sought to avoid categorization
        as a racial group
   Today’s controversies (see Prewitt reading)
       Latinos as “ethnic,” not racial category
            At mass level, many Latinos identify racially
       Arab/Middle Eastern racial category
       Multi-racial self-identification
    Contemporary Pan-Ethnicity
     is Substantively Different
   Government has promoted
       VRA an example
       Government collects data to measure pan-ethnicity, so
        relative status can be measured
       Access to some state resources allocated by
        race/ethnicity
   Ethnic leaders organize pan-ethnically
   Sustained immigration creates foundation for more
    durable identities across generations
   Communications ensure that immigrants know
    about U.S. ethnic categories before migration
U.S. Population by Race,
         2000


                  White
                  Black
                  Asian American
                  Native American
                  Multiple Races
Hispanic and non-Hispanic
    Population, 2000


                  Hispanic

                  Non-Hispanic
                  White
                  Non-Hispaic Other
      But, Pan-Ethnicity the
    Exception at the Mass Level
   Low affect across national origin populations within
    pan-ethnic groups
       Affect—To show a fondness for; to like to use or practice;
        to choose (Webster's Dictionary)
   Traditionally, little contact between Asian Americans
    or Latinos
       Latinos and Asian Americans increasingly living around
        each other
   Perception of “common” Latino or Asian American
    culture low by Latinos or Asian Americans
            When Does a Pan-ethnic
               Identity Form?
        Felix Padilla (“On the Nature of Latino Ethnicity”)
    1.     Latinos (or Asian Americans) come into contact with
           each other
    2.     Latinos (or Asian Americans) share experiences that
           exclude them from majority communities
    3.     Latinos (or Asian Americans) of different origins work
           together to address their common exclusion and form a
           new identity based on shared struggle

        Padilla—Latino (or Asian American) identity is
         inherently political
            Who is Likely to Adopt a
             Pan-ethnic Identity?
   From Lien, Conway, and Wong (for Asian
    Americans)
       Indians (relative to Chinese)
       Asian Americans who perceive a shared Asian culture
       Strong partisans
       U.S. citizens
       Involved in ethnic causes
       Older people
       Employed people
       Negative predictors – Asian Americans who experienced
        discrimination, 1st generation, women
       Pan-Ethnic Identification
       Among Asian Americans
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0
     Chinese   Korean   Vietnamese   Japanese   Filipino   S. Asian


 Share Identifying as Asian American

                         Source: Lien, Conway, and Wong
                So, Why Does Pan-
                 Ethnicity Matter?
   Provides foundation for the allocation of state
    resources
   Majority populations increasingly view
    minorities in pan-ethnic terms
   Ethnic leaders organize pan-ethnically
   So, pan-ethnic identification will grow among
    Latinos and Asian Americans
       And other pan-ethnic populations?
                     For Next Time
1)       The first essay is due next Tuesday. Be
         prepared to discuss your thesis Thursday.
2)       QUESTION FOR READING – As
         Reconstruction came to an end, African
         Americans in the South lost rights they had
         exercised.
          Identify these rights and how they were taken
           away.

				
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