Skip to main content
eScholarship
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC Irvine

UC Irvine Electronic Theses and Dissertations bannerUC Irvine

The Right Way, the Wrong Way, and the American Way: Nativist Policy in California, 1990-2000

  • Author(s): Pantoja, Ruben Ignacio
  • Advisor(s): Casavantes Bradford, Anita
  • et al.
Abstract

This thesis examines how California’s Proposition 187 and Proposition 227 affected Latina/o families and communities. During the 1994 gubernatorial campaign, Republican Governor Pete Wilson publically blamed undocumented immigrants for higher crime rates, the economic downturn, and higher unemployment in California. This anti-immigrant backlash had consequences for the future of California politics. However, I argue that it had an equally significant impact on the lives of Latina/o families. Using newspapers, speeches, oral interviews and government documents, I demonstrate that the campaign to pass Proposition 187 and Proposition 227 produced fear as well as threatened the unity and stability of immigrant households. By focusing on these overlooked families, I contribute to the cultural history of U.S. Latina/os, as well as the histories of immigration and childhood.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View