Chicano High Schoolers in a Changing Los Angeles: 2nd Edition

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Chicano High Schoolers in a Changing Los Angeles: 2nd Edition

by James Diego Vigil

Professor Vigil’s ethnographic approach in unwrapping Mexican American high school students’ academic achievement is broad and detailed. He provides us a broad canvas within which the reader can examine the connections between level of acculturation (i.e., cultural origins and ethnic identity), class status, and educational performances. He compiles rich data from two contrasting high schools (and, later, another upscale one) over several decades (1974, 1988, 2007, 2019), almost 50 years from the Vietnam War to the current COVID-19 pandemic. The major discovery shows how a balanced multicultural learning experience makes for a positive difference in school performance. 

ISBN: 978-1-62249-549-8

Pages: 200

CASE STUDIES IN CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY. George and Louise Spindler, Series Editors, 

Chicano High-Schoolers in a Changing Los Angeles is now in a Second Edition (first published as Personas Mexicanas in 1997)and still "serves a high purpose in educational anthropology ...to better our understanding of Mexican -American high school students. It is impressive for showing the diversity among the Mexican-American population ...by taking a comparative approach...including a quantitative and qualitative mix...in different places. There are many other dimensions of this rich study." 

“…the first book to focus entirely on the experience and plight of Chicano high school students…. I strongly recommend this perceptive and illuminating book to all educators and policymakers who would like to become better informed about Chicano school failure and success.”
(Harvard Educational Review) 

“Vigil’s book presents accounts drawn from longer ethnographic interviews with urban and suburban high school students…. The strength of this book lies in these stories. Students of anthropology, multicultural education, and psychocultural influences on learning will no doubt find {this book} helpful and interesting.” 
(Anthropology & Education Quarterly)

"Vigil calls for a more holistic approach that takes into consideration the reflexive nature of culturalists’ and structuralists’ viewpoints". He proposes a theoretical model that places an individual’s “persona and motivation as a means to explain school performance."   
(Gil Conchas, Professor of  Education, UC Irvine)


This product was added to our catalog on Monday 21 September, 2020.

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