The Mexican American Family Album is one of a series that presents the history of each ethnic group as if it were the history of the collective “family,” with lots of family photos of domestic scenes. The series seems to be pitched to a teen-age level. Most of the text consists of quotations from personal narratives. It’s an engaging idea, and it comes off pretty well. This particular volume starts with the obligatory section on the “first Mexican Americans” (a phrase that could irritate some of their New Mexican and Coloradan descendants), but the bulk is devoted to immigration and settlement (two chapters), work and “putting down roots” (a chapter each), and a curious amalgam titled “Part of the United States,” which includes Cesar Chávez’ Huelga, the Chicano movement, continuing immigration, “making it,” and “celebrating the heritage.” Obviously, this book is cast in the celebratory mode; what is equally obvious is that the history is thin. But it’s readable, and it does not sugarcoat the Mexican American experience.
Book Review| May 01 1996
The Mexican American Family Album
The Mexican American Family Album. By Hoobler, Dorothy and Hoobler, Thomas.
Oxford University Press,
127pp. . $19.95.
Hispanic American Historical Review (1996) 76 (2): 329.
Joan Moore; The Mexican American Family Album. Hispanic American Historical Review 1 May 1996; 76 (2): 329. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00182168-76.2.329
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