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Andres Pollon Ramos

Jennifer Rodrick

English (115)

December 6, 2018

Latino Immigrants in Society

There are many different types of groups of people in society. These people try to shape

their identities either by conformity which is a type of social influences that involves change in a

person’s belief or way of behaving in order for them to “fit” in society. Others shape their

identities with performative meaning the way language affects change in the world and functions

as a form of social action. One of the main groups in society can be Latino immigrants. These

immigrants tend to conform in society in order for them to socialize in a different environment.

Conformity can be interpreted and viewed in various forms, but this depends on the type of

people and their intellectual thinking. Although, it can be viewed in a positive way in relation to

society norms, it can also be viewed negatively in destructing the decisions made from people.

Conformity together with peer pressure happens to be a persistent issue in society because it

encourages a person to have a different mindset in order to live in a new society. The issues of

immigrants shaping their identities to a new society is discussed in the articles “Better than

White Trash: Work Ethic, Latinidad and Whiteness in Rural Arkansas” by Hallet Miranda Cady,

“Recent Immigration and Race” by Vickerman Milton, and “The Social Adaptation of Children

of Mexican Immigrants: Educational Aspirations Beyond Junior High School” by Hilaire

Aonghas. These articles gave an evidence and a connection in discussing the way Latinos

immigrant have a social complexity by adapting to America and seeking alternatives through


Many Latino immigrants tend to change their beliefs and behavior once they migrate to

the United States. Their form of believing is very different from each other. Many of them think

that once they arrive in the United States, they will be able to pursue the “American Dream”

when in reality they don’t know much about the norms and how hard it is to maintain a stable

life in the United State. Latino immigrants who come to this country perceives new cultures and

adapts to the tendency of American people. Many immigrants shape their identities of

behaviorism in order for them to be able to socialize with other people in America. This refers to

the various ways in which they have learned to communicate with American people using new

language such as English. All this

can be explained in the article

“Better than White Trash: Work

Ethic, Latinidad and Whiteness in

Rural Arkansas” when Hallet

mentions how Latino immigrants

are important and essential to this

country. Most American people see

Latino immigrants as hard workers, effective, and intelligent people. For this reason, Americans

see their identities of the Latino immigrants as diligent labor workers. Hallet states that “Latina

and Latino migrants perform boundary work (Lamont, 2000; Hartigan, 2010), constructing their

identities as “good” workers and neighbors.” As of the quote, Hallet is trying to say that the

immigrants that are Latinos and Latinas can shape their identities living in this country by being

good neighbors and good people for this country. Latinos are recognized by American people as

fighters and efficient workers. Although, some Americans view Latinos to be serviceable in this

country, not all Americans have the same perspective since they might have the idea of not liking

immigrants or wanting to deal with Latinos in their community.

Many of these Latinos immigrants are teenagers whose identities are usually shaped in a

different way that they never imagined. One of them, is seeing how this country provides many

different opportunities and benefit to everyone, but it cost a lot of work and sacrifices as well.

The majority of these teenagers are given the opportunity to have a better education. Most

immigrant’s teenagers who come here and start studying, tend to change their behavior because

they realize that the American society is very different compared to their countries. America is a

country full of benefits and opportunities, but it is up to the person to take advantages of these

opportunities. Some of these teenagers tend to take too many advantages of these benefits, not

being able to use them productively. This leads to the point where they start to look for the

"American Dream." Only one part of immigrant’s teenagers usually gets the American dream

and continue studying and going forward in this country. This can be explained in the article

“The Social Adaptation of Children of Mexican Immigrants: Educational Aspirations Beyond

Junior High School” where Hilaire mentions that “At the cusp of entering high school, Mexican-

origin students profess positive educational values, aspirations, & expectations, belying

documented elevated rates of high school dropout & low rates of college attendance.” This

makes the reader understand that most of immigrant’s teenagers who attends at high school for

the first time, are more positive and effective in their studies because they are adapting to a new

shape of identity. This identity refers to one in which they overcome in many obstacles they face

with society. Many teenagers who come from Mexico and Centro America have demonstrated

that they are also capable of achieving their goals in America. They are also able to graduate

from high school and attend college/university just like American students do.

The migration of many people from Centro America are usually not welcomed or

accepted in this country, especially by the president. Some American people don’t like the idea

of adapting to a new shaped of identity, sharing the cultures, and behaviors with immigrant

people has. They come to believe that Latino immigrants have different behavior in cultures,

religions, and their accents when they speak to interact with each other. Everyone speaks Spanish

and English differently. Not everyone has the same accent or pronunciation. Comparing

Americans with immigrants, Latinos tend to have a different accent when they speak English and

vice versa, whereas Americans have a different accent when speaking in Spanish. Not only

Latinos immigrants goes through this, but also people that are Afro American, Asian, Chinese,

Korean, etc. are not accepted in this country as

well either because of their identities, color of

skin, or the type of race. This provokes

American people to start making many

complexities among immigrants in order for

them to accept them in their societies or

communities. This makes a connection with

the article “Recent Immigration and Race” by Vickerman, Milton. He writes about “The

conceptualization of race is pivotally important because it determines the shape of assimilation,

and, consistent with growing immigration-driven complexity, no one model of assimilation

dominates the society.” This may refer that in this country, it is very important for people to

learn to accept others regardless of their race, ethnicity or color of their skin. We all deserve to

be treated equally in this country whether or not we are a citizen or an immigrant. Latino

immigrants are not affecting the complexity of shapes of people's identities in American, instead

it helps the United States to be a better and more diverse country. They help the United States to

have different variety of cultures, behaviors, and identities. However, it is not possible to avoid

these complexities since it still exists on some part of America, and these are the people who

believe that the migration of people is affecting the United States in all aspects that are seen

today by our society.

Latinos immigrant tend to change their shapes of identities when they have to adapt to the

new environment in America. They start experimenting new cultures, learning to live and

socialize with new people. Some immigrants may like this new adaptation to the environment

because they are experimenting something new, something different in their lives. The

immigrant students at schools or colleges have to share their shapes of identities with those who

are not from the same country or create many links with them. Most immigrant’s students tend to

have an environment compatible with the rest of the immigrant students because they already

know the situations in which each of them come to this country. Finally, this country will be full

of complexities, which many people won’t accept immigrants in the United States. However,

there are so many things that immigrant people do to turn this country into a better place. This is

reflected in labor work or in the productions generated by the country. There should be no

complexities of ethnic, race, and discrimination of skin color because at the end, we all live in

the same country where we are free to share our cultures, religions, environments. We should

learn to live in the same community, being able to share all this thing with one to another. Day

by day, we need to learn how to cope with other people that don’t accept the immigrants, making

the United States a more united and complex nation.


Works Cited Pages

Aonghas, St. Hilaire. The Social Adaptation of Children of Mexican Immigrants: Educational

Aspirations beyond Junior High School. Social Science Quarterly 1026-1043, 2002.

Milton, Vickerman. “Recent Immigration and Race”. Social Science and Research on Race. Du

Bois Review Web, 2007. 141-165.

Miranda Cady, Hallet. Better Than White Trash: Work Ethic, Latinidad and Whiteness in Rural

Arkansas. Latino Studies 81-106, 2012.