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This essay argues for the need of a specific formulation of anti-Latino racism in order to represent this massive phenomenon, as well as to understand the specific form of white or Anglo reaction that is currently on the rise. The racist imaginary has variegated targets of attack with varied and specific representations of Latinos (and, within this group, of Mexicans and Puerto Ricans), as well as Arabs and Muslins, Asians, Africans, Jews, and others (and each of these groups needs further division and specification). Also relevant are the specific histories of the U.S. international relations, and the associated historical memories they invoke. Together these specificities make a difference in the development and formation of reactive policies and informal violence. Although from one perspective all of these nonmajority groups might be thought to share some characteristics that make them subject to racism and ethnic chauvinism, given their non-European status, still, a broad brush concept of racism or xenophobia has let to inadequate analyses as well as ineffective remedial policies.


Institute for Social Justice

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Book Chapter

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