Being Xicana in New York:Intro

When I was growing up there were not that many Mexicans in New York. There was Don Olio who had a La Poblanita Mexican Grocery down the street but my family and a few other Mexican families made up his core clientale. Now we have Little Mexico’s all over NYC and the tri-state area. Which brings me to another thought that has been circulating inside me. Assimilation vs. Cultural Resistance. On the one hand, I like other Mexican American youth participate in Mexican cultural Events sponsored by local cultural organizations. We like other Mexican communities in the US have our Mexica Dances, our Tianguis, our Tamalera street vendors, our Quinceaneras. Yet as youth we are simoultaneously called to assimilate into American popular culture. Yes, you eat your tamal while you rock your tims in your Alex Lora t shirt under a bubble Jacket North Face. We look messed up like we don’t have our culture together or maybe we are creating an entirely different culture, particularly here in NY. Welcome to Manhatitlan.

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