Inventing Latinos

A New Story of American Racism

A groundbreaking examination of how Latinos’ new collective racial identity upends the way Americans understand race

“Latin music is more popular than country music, and one of the most recognizable political faces in the United States is Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-NY, whose family comes from Puerto Rico. And yet, Latinos . . . still face overt and subtle racism.”
—from 2/26/19 NBC News article

In an unprecedented demographic shift, Latinos will comprise a third of the American population in just a matter of decades. While their influence shapes everything from electoral politics to popular culture, many Americans still struggle with two basic questions: Who are Latinos, and where do they fit in America’s racial order? Laura E. Gómez, a leading expert on race in America, argues that it is only recently that Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Dominicans, Central Americans, and others are seeing themselves (and are being seen by others) under the banner of a cohesive racial identity. And the catalyst for this emergent identity, she argues, has been the ferocity of anti-Latino racism.

In a bold effort to reframe our often-confused discussions over the Latinx generation, Gómez argues that everything from Trump’s toxic rhetoric and anti-immigrant laws like Arizona’s SB1070 to DACA and sanctuary cities have indelibly changed the way race functions in this country.

Part history, part guide for the future, Inventing Latinos argues that all Americans must grapple with Latinos’ dynamic identity—an identity that is impacting everything we think we know about race in America.

Inventing Latinos | The New Press

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