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ERIC Number: EJ925888
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 31
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0005-2604
The Ideal Immigrant
Delgadillo, Theresa
Aztlan: A Journal of Chicano Studies, v36 n1 p37-67 Spr 2011
The public discourse about immigration in the United States has long been fraught with xenophobia and racism. Since 9/11, moreover, the immigration issue has been firmly linked to questions of national security in the public imagination. In this recent period, the state has asserted extraordinary controls over immigrants and citizens that affect the discourse of immigration and the very notion of citizenship. How do representations and self-representations of Latina/os in the United States address this political and social climate? And how do new delimitations of citizenship, narratives of national security, and debates around immigration influence our self-representation? This essay examines recent literary and visual self-constructions by Latina/os in two photographic narratives, "Americanos" and "Mexican Chicago" and a book of essays titled "The New Americans". Locating these texts at the juncture of the immigration debate, institutionalization of Latina/o histories and literatures, and contemporary politics, this essay examines the mythos of the "ideal immigrant" that is central to U.S. self-definition as it appears in Latina/o texts. This work finds that Latina/o constructions of this idealized figure inject more expansive transnational notions of citizenship into the public debate yet frequently reinscribe the discourses of exclusion at its core.
UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center. 193 Haines Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1544. Tel: 310-794-9380; Tel: 310-825-2642; Fax: 310-206-1784; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A