This article explores the ethnic self-identification of second-generation children whose immigrant parents came to the US from Latin America. The focus of the analysis is the adoption of the pan-ethnic label, 'Hispanic', in contrast to national designators and non-hyphenated American identities. Using data from a recent large survey of children of immigrants in south Florida and southern California, the analysis explores the determinants of ethnic self-identities and the potential consequences of the adoption of one of these symbolic levels on children's self-esteem, educational expectations and perceptions of discrimination. The findings indicate the children who adopt the Hispanic level are the least well assimilated: they report poorer English skills, lower self-esteem and higher rates of poverty than their counterparts who identify themselves as Americans or as hyphenated Americans. Theoretical and policy implications of findings as they bear on prospects for successful adaptation of second generation youth are discussed.
- Second-generation immigrants
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cultural Studies
- Sociology and Political Science