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Hello everyone! As the new editor for the Hispanic Culture site I would like to start a new forum on the topic of identity. In your daily interactions, which term is more prevalent -- Hispanic or Latina/o?

Or, do is it more common to refer to one's heritage, such as Puerto Rican, Cuban American, etc.?

Here's the link to my article on this topic:
Introduction to Hispanic Culture http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art177006.asp


Last edited by Carleen-Hispanic Culture; 07/20/12 08:53 AM.

Carleen D Sanchez
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In my parish we have a large Hispanic population from all over Central and South America. As you can see we say Hispanic. However, recently Meg Medina, a Latina author, came to our Friends of the Library meeting.

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I always assumed it was interchangeable.

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Hi Angie!
Thanks for your post. I think that "Hispanic" works well enough in everyday conversation since it is an inclusive term. It is interesting that Meg Medina, however, wished to be noted as "Latina." To each her own!


Carleen D Sanchez
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Hi Jill,
Thanks for participating! The terms are to a degree interchangeable, although as my article indicates there are subtle differences.

BTW, I love your site! I am a huge supporter of frugal living in order to save on waste and over consumption. Your site always has great tips.


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In our community Hispanic is used. Latino(a) is seldom heard.

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Hi Carleen,

Maria, my wife, was born in Mexico and at the age of twelve moved with her parents to San Jose, CA. A dual citizen, her self-identity is neither Hispanic nor Latina but rather is staunchly MEXICAN. On the other end of the self-identity spectrum, her second youngest sibling who moved to the U.S. as an infant, although also a light-skinned Mestiza, adamantly perceives herself as a Caucasian and wishes that everyone else did also.
When thinking of Maria's sister my mind for some reason, rightly or wrongly, wanders back to my high school readings of Gordon Allport and the concept of self-hate vis-a-vis assimilation.

If you had a choice, are you comfortable with your site being called "Hispanic Culture" or would you prefer something else?

Last edited by Les-Mexico/Birds; 07/18/12 01:10 PM.
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Hi Les!
You have posed great questions and examples. This is exactly what makes these forums useful. Identity really is dependent upon one's experiences as much as historical and cultural context. Living in the US we often do experience that conflict you wrote of -- self-hate, assimilation, anti-assimilation, and cultural nationalism. For many people there are negative consequences to being "ethnic."

I'm on the fence regarding the name of my site. Certainly the majority of the US refers to people as Hispanic. As I continue to write articles I will delve more into the intricacies of identity.

I really appreciate your post!! I also love you Mexico site smile
carleen


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Hi Carleen,

Thanks for your kind words.

A little off topic (ok, a lot off topic!) but...
I see that you did your Master's research on obsidian tools which is one of my higher priortized passions. I live around 6 miles from the small foothill town of Zinaparo ("Zinapo" is the word used locally for obsidian). The hills surrounding that community are a major source site for obsidian of all varieties: black, mahogany, brown, rainbow- plus small quantities of silver and gold sheen. Not surprisingly, it is also a fantastic site for obsidian tools, weapons, figurines and decorative items.

An acquaintance of mine from Zinaparo, along with his brothers is the leading collector of artifacts in the area and perhaps one day his family's findings (which are amazing and extensive) will be funded and put in a museum in that locality; The vast majority of the town's residents (ok, everyone, maybe including their wives?)think that the are "loco en la cabeza" for wasting their time on such "nonsense."

My collection is pretty darn good but pales in comparison to Guillermo's. Most of the better specimens, of course, are excavated for, but surprisingly I have found some prime items on the surface like owl, dog and snake/serpent figurines and some ornamental buttons (I think?).

Getting on topic a little bit, based on my observations and feedback from Ma Eugenia aka Maria, the majority of the residents in our small economically depressed and provincial town/municipality have a greater allegiance or identity to the state or region, Michoacan, than they do for Mexico as a cohesive entity.

Well, welcome to BellaOnline and I think that it is beyond wonderful that it now has an editor who has a comprehensive and well-grounded background on that vast subject area and realizes "Hispanic Culture" to be much more than just tacos and salsa.

Last edited by Les-Mexico/Birds; 07/19/12 11:57 AM.
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Hi Carleen! Thank you for your nice words on the Frugal Living Site. I really have fun coming up with new ideas to share.

I didn't realize you had an article on the difference bt latino y hispanic. One thing i Like to do is post a link from my forum right to the articles - some people just live in these forums and forget we have accompanying topical sites to go with them! smile

Anyway, I will go hunt up the article - I am interested in what the differences are. I like to know the finer points on things.

Les, tacos and salsa would be more in line with the Mexican Cooking Site (and yes; I agree there is more to Mex food than the stereotypes). Or maybe salsa would fall under the latin dancing site (OK, i just made that topic up). wink

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