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Chicana Mothering

  • By: Larissa M. Mercado-Lopez
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

The term Chicana refers to a woman of Mexican descent, while Latina is a more general term, referring to a female from a Spanish-speaking household, born in a Spanish-speaking country, or choosing to identify as having Spanish ancestry.

Chicana motherhood varies across the social strata of Chicana mothers, and is irreducible to particular mothering practices or identities. As Chicanas, Chicana mothers negotiate the traditions and expectations of both U.S. and Mexican (Spanish and indigenous) cultures. Though Chicana mothers remain connected by their shared histories as subjects of colonization and the religious and cultural influence of Mexican maternal archetypes, the social, cultural, and generational differences among Chicana mothers have, in many ways, continued to evolve how Chicana motherhood is conceptualized.

Chicana Mothering Roots

Mirande and Enriquez trace the structure ...

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