Heather Silber Mohamed
The New Americans?
Immigration, Protest, and The Politics of Latino Identity
University Press of Kansas 2017
New Books in American StudiesNew Books in Latino StudiesNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Political ScienceNew Books in PoliticsNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Public PolicyNew Books Network July 31, 2017 Lilly Goren
The New Americans? Immigration, Protest, and The Politics of Latino Identity (University Press of Kansas, 2017) by Heather Silber Mohamed weaves together a number of different strands within the discipline of Political Science in context of the diverse Latino community in the United States. Silber Mohamed integrates analysis of social identity and citizenship, social movements and protest politics, immigration policy, and the multiplicity of communities within the Latino-American population in the U.S. The research for The New Americans? is broad and complex, but the centerpiece of the book are the protests and demonstrations in 2006 in regard to the immigration reform bill that the George W. Bush Administration advocated, and that was debated in the House and the Senate. This piece of legislation and the national conversation that it engendered is the unique case study that Silber Mohamed delves into to expose and analyze the relationship between social movements and understandings of identity and identity-framing, especially within the contemporary Latino-American communities. Silber Mohamed integrated the results from the Latino National Survey in her analysis of political attitudes and shifts of attitudes during this public debate. She traces the history and experiences of distinct groups within the broad umbrella of the American Latino community, explaining the different approaches each group has towards immigration policy and their understanding of citizenship and political advocacy. Given the more recent high profile and polarizing discussion of immigration in the United States, Silber Mohamed’s book is important contribution to this complex policy arena and our understanding of the many dimensions and political actors within the immigration debate.