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Essay Hispanic and Native Americans Culture in California

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Upon initial research of the rich heritage of California the two minority groups that stood out as especially influential in historic California and today’s society are the Native Americans and Hispanic Americans. To better understand and identify with these minority groups we must identify the common themes within their day to day life. By researching each culture’s common family traditions, religious beliefs, arts & entertainment, and language one can gain a greater appreciation of many different kinds of people, and in turn have more effective relationships in a multicultural society.

Hispanics comprise California’s largest minority group. They make up 37.6% of the total population (US Census, 2011). The term Hispanic defines a population of Spanish-speaking individuals from Cuba, Mexico, South America, Puerto Rico, and Spain.
Family is the most important social unit of Hispanic life. It is a close-knit entity that includes immediate and extended family members. Typically, the father is the head of the family and the mother rules the house (Clutter, n.d.). Vacations are usually taken to relatives’ houses to promote togetherness in celebration of birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, graduations, and communions. In times of need, the family is the first line of aid, and Hispanics typically live with their parents until marriage. While this deviates from American ideals for individuals aged 18-35, it actually provides young adults the opportunity for future success because so much money is saved from greatly reduced housing costs (Williams, 2009).
Recently immigrated parents often learn English from their children. Over 70% of Hispanic Americans in California are English Language Learners (ELL) and are given the resour...


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...ges, Territories, and Names of California Tribes. Ethnohistory, 15(4), 418. Retrieved from EBSCOhost. (Primary)
Forbes, J (1982) American Indians of California and Nevada. Detroit: Naturegraph Publishers. (Primary)
Parker, A. C. (1975). The Indian How Book. New York: Dover Publications. (Secondary)
Sowell, T. (1981). Ethnic America: A History. New York: Basic Books. (Secondary)
The World Fact Book. (n.d.). Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved August 12, 2011, from https://www.cia.gov (Primary)
Williams, Norma. (2009). The Mexican American family: tradition and change. New York: General Hall. (Primary)
This Old House Became Hub of Community's Life. (n.d.). toledoblade.com -- The Blade ~ Toledo California. Retrieved August 12, 2011, from http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/artikkel?Avis=TO&Kategori=SRLATINO13&Dato=20001017&Lopenr=11017013&Ref=AR (Primary)


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