Susan Bibler Coutin is Professor of Criminology, Law and Society and Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. She is the author of
Living in the Gap
This chapter presents a social history of 1.5-generation migrants’ experiences of growing up in the United States. As they negotiated gaps between belonging and exclusion, pasts and futures, normality and abnormality, and El Salvador and the United States, youth became part of U.S. neighborhoods, encountered racism and discrimination, developed and rejected particular social identities in school, qualified for or lost legal status in the United States, learned particular versions of Spanish and English, and repositioned themselves within families and between countries. This chapter considers the ways that youth reshaped the social and institutional contexts in which they were located.