The Internal Tension Faced By Latino Americans Essay

The Internal Tension Faced By Latino Americans Essay

Length: 1521 words (4.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

José Antonio Villarreal’s Pocho does a superb job of dealing with both the common coming of age narrative and the tensions faced by Latino Americans. Richard Rubio attempts to remain individualistic throughout his life but struggles with what that means within the confines that his heritage and society structure him into. Characters ebb and flow through his life, each having certain standards, expectations or ideals predetermined about him. Richard attempts to cast off and ignore the pressures they place on him, and instead forage his own path for what his future is to look like. I believe that the conflict between his family’s Mexican heritage and his American home is what forces Richard to actively pursue, and even fight, for his individuality. The internal tension faced by Richard acts as an early catalyst to be discontent in his own family’s traditions and values and instead begin his search for his true self.
Richard holds himself and his future to a higher realm of possibility than the other white adults in his life. A white recruiter at a boxing ring gives Richard one of his earliest exposures to an outsider attempting to tell him what he can and cannot do based on his skin color . While boxing with Thomas, Richard is told that he could find a future in boxing, and, as the recruiter implies, such a job would be just about as good as Richard, a Mexican, could hope to receive. Richard rejects this man’s attempt to limit Richard’s potential success, and turns the training offer down.
As Richard grows older, cops, teachers, and friends continually underestimate his ability to succeed. When Richard is arrested with his friends, the cop immediately lump them into the same category as the zootsuiters who they all suspected of ra...

... middle of paper ...

...ack of individuality. From their haircuts, the way they march, and the way their sheets are creased, everything must be homogenous. Richard joins an organization dedicated to removing differences in an attempt to maintain his individuality. Richard’s ability to break free from his household is a display of neither of his heritages but rather him finally taking a stand for his individuality and rising above the pressures that Americans and Mexicans had placed upon him.
Richard’s departure from his hometown and old life is the beginning of his journey to fully become his own person. The prior year had less to do with self exploration and were more dedicated to his combat to cast off the shackles that society imposed upon him due to his skin color and upbringing. Now that he is essentially alone in the world, Richard can remake himself into the person he wants to be.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Latino Community And The United States Essay

- “Where Latinos live greatly depends on when they came to the United States and one their economic class (Rodolfo Acuna 6).” The Latino community is rapidly becoming the most populated minority group within the United States. Latino is a diverse term for Spanish-speaking population often referring to Hispanic or Latino origin. A vast amount of Americans have Hispanic backgrounds among the United States population. The varied Latino cultures planted inside the United States society, population, and government now play a big part in the day to day life of the nation....   [tags: United States, Hispanic and Latino Americans]

Better Essays
1662 words (4.7 pages)

The Latino Generation : Voices Of The New America Essay

- The Latino Generation: Voices of the New America is a book written by Mario T. Garcia. This book tells the individual life stories of individual Latino Americans all attending the same class at University of California, Santa Barbra. The book discloses stories and events told by 13 students each who narrate from first person and give us a brief description of their life. The book is composed of 13 sections with an additional introduction and conclusion (Garcia, Kindle). Within this reflection I will describe the key points within this book and compare the stories within this book not only to each other, but also to additional stories of Latino Americans and how Garcia’s book rids the general...   [tags: United States, Hispanic and Latino Americans]

Better Essays
1079 words (3.1 pages)

Essay on The Second Method Of Mexican And Latino Culture

- The third method that Mexican and Latino culture have been attacked has been through been stripped of their own culture’s health and medical knowledge. As mentioned in “Patient Citizens, Immigrant Mothers”, often the first customs that Latina immigrants are those relating to pregnancy and child birth. Often in the rural Mexican environment, woman often experienced more physically demanding routines such as farming or caring for livestock. Usually pregnant Latinas would often be supported other female family members such as the mother-in-law....   [tags: United States, Hispanic and Latino Americans]

Better Essays
1150 words (3.3 pages)

Latino Students in American Colleges Essay

- The current trend in lack of Latina/o students attending college combines a lack of college readiness with a deficiency in resources to prepare this student population. More and more higher education scholars are accepting these deficiencies as roadblocks to college access, and are looking to preparation programs and parent educational resources as a subject worthy of consideration. There are many different challenges being faced by this population, a population that is according to Oliva and Nora, “the fastest growing minority population in the country”(Oliva & Nora, 2004)....   [tags: Latino College Students]

Better Essays
3115 words (8.9 pages)

Diabetes in the Latino Community Essay

- Introduction Diabetes is a prevalent health disparity among the Latino population. Diabetes is listed as the fifth leading cause of death among the Latino population in the website for Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, in 2009. According to McBean, “the 2001 prevalence among Hispanics was significantly higher than among blacks.” (2317) In other words among the Hispanic or Latino community, there is a higher occurrence of diabetes as compared to other racial/ethnic groups such as Blacks and Native Americans....   [tags: Health Disparity, Latino Population]

Better Essays
1635 words (4.7 pages)

Racial Segregation And Segregation Of Hispanic Americans Essay

- After the Mexican-American war, most Hispanics living in the U.S. became American citizens in southwestern U.S. Although, the citizens were promised the protection of their rights, they were mistreated, racially categorized along the border, had fewer opportunities, and experienced segregation in schools. For instance, in the 1900, “Mexican enrollment was 17.3 percent, while Anglo enrollment was 38.9 percent.” (Guadalupe) This illustrates the racial disparity of Mexican Americans in southwestern U.S....   [tags: United States, Hispanic and Latino Americans]

Better Essays
756 words (2.2 pages)

Essay about Chicano Studies and the Latino Student Community

- Latino grassroots politics in the academic realm has been considered as predominantly Chicano in nature. However, the geometry of this academic sector is no longer one dimensional, due to the formation of a Chicana feminist consciousness; the rise of an identified gay community within the Chicana/o student populace; and the emergence of “Latinos” in era of Chicanismo, The abrupt growth of Latinos (e.g. Spanish speaking of Mexican, Central or Latin American decent) in the United State’s educational system led the general population to characterize them as subjects on the cusps of political power and influence....   [tags: social exculsion, collaborative, latino]

Better Essays
1645 words (4.7 pages)

Native Americans During The World War II Essay

- During the World War II, many ethnics groups such as the Native Americans, Latinas, Japanese Americans and African Americans were struggling and fighting for their freedom and equal rights, many of the ethnics group achieved their goals due to effort they all had to go through. After the World War II, the Native Americans faced discrimination in housing, employment, education, land rights, water rights, and voting. In many states, it was illegal for Indians to purchase or consume alcohol. Yet many of the veterans and soldiers had found that while in the military they were able to purchase and consume alcohol with no legal difficulties....   [tags: United States, Hispanic and Latino Americans]

Better Essays
972 words (2.8 pages)

Latino Americans : The 500 Year Legacy Essays

- Latino Americans: The 500-Year Legacy That Shaped A Nation, is a book primarily focusing on Latino Americans shaping the U.S and how they helped create culture in the nation. The book begins to give a back story of Latin American history and how The Conquistadors were some of the first explorers to explore what we now know today as the continental U.S. and mostly the Southwest. The first chapters begin to expose the battles and difficulties of first settling in the Southwest with Native Americans already present while battling for independence as well....   [tags: United States, Latin America, New Mexico]

Better Essays
1285 words (3.7 pages)

Latino/Hispanic Americans Essay

- Latino/Hispanic Americans cover a much wider demographic then believed. Latino/Hispanic Americans consist of; Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Guatemalan American to name a few. Latino/Hispanic Americans are the largest ethnic group in the United States. The Latino/Hispanic culture is very different than ours. Their culture differs in economics, politics, family traditions, family structure, religion, education, language, fashion, art, music, dancing, and food. As natural born Americans in the United States it is important for us to learn about the different cultures migrating into the United States....   [tags: culture, demography, United States, tradition]

Better Essays
2566 words (7.3 pages)