Research Programs: Summer Stipends

Period of Performance

5/1/2010 - 9/30/2010

Funding Totals

$6,000.00 (approved)
$6,000.00 (awarded)

Fighting for Their Place: Mexicans and Mexican Americans in the U.S. South, 1910-2010

FAIN: FT-58102-10

Julie Meira Weise
CSU, Long Beach (Long Beach, CA 90840-0004)

This project reshapes the fields of Mexican American, U.S. Southern, and Mexican history by bringing them into dialogue with one another. The historical actors under study are the thousands of Mexican immigrants and Mexican Americans who lived and worked in the U.S. South throughout the twentieth century. My book manuscript, the first to recover these migrants' stories, shows how their experiences in the South differed from those of their counterparts in the Southwest, due to the South's distinct racial systems. I show that Mexican state actors stationed at consulates both influenced and were influenced by the Jim Crow system, and later, the rise of "color-blind" conservatism. Finally, I demonstrate that the "provincial" U.S. South actually existed within a transnational field of racial politics and ideologies, in which binary ideas of "black" and "white" encountered more flexible and culturally-based racial systems in the form of Mexican immigrants fighting for rights.

Associated Products

Corazon de Dixie: Mexicanos in the U.S. South Since 1910 (Book)
Title: Corazon de Dixie: Mexicanos in the U.S. South Since 1910
Author: Julie M. Weise
Abstract: Publisher’s synopsis When Latino migration to the U.S. South became increasingly visible in the 1990s, observers and advocates grasped for ways to analyze “new” racial dramas in the absence of historical reference points. However, as this book is the first to comprehensively document, Mexicans and Mexican Americans have a long history of migration to the U.S. South. Corazón de Dixie recounts the untold histories of Mexicanos’ migrations to New Orleans, Mississippi, Arkansas, Georgia, and North Carolina as far back as 1910. It follows Mexicanos into the heart of Dixie, where they navigated the Jim Crow system, cultivated community in the cotton fields, purposefully appealed for help to the Mexican government, shaped the southern conservative imagination in the wake of the civil rights movement, and embraced their own version of suburban living at the turn of the twenty-first century. Rooted in U.S. and Mexican archival research, oral history interviews, and family photographs, Corazón de Dixie unearths not just the facts of Mexicanos’ long-standing presence in the U.S. South but also their own expectations, strategies, and dreams.
Year: 2015
Primary URL:
Publisher: University of North Carolina Press
Type: Single author monograph
Copy sent to NEH?: No