Browsing by Author "Beltrán, Cristina"
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- ItemA Century of Examination: DuBois, Baldwin, and Self in the Racial Construct(2007) Taylor, Brianna; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemA Comparative Perspective on the Decline of the Liberal in American Politics: Analysis and Recommendations(1997) Volkman, Eric; Beltrán, Cristina; Krippner, James
- ItemAlgeria and 'Les Bleus': Important Players in the Complex Construction of French Nationalism and Identity(2011) Debucquoy-Dodley, Dominique; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemChallenging Histories of Racialization and Immigration Economics: An Analysis of the 2006 Immigrant Mega-Marchas and Arizona’s S.B. 1070(2011) Castillo, Eric; Beltrán, CristinaThroughout the history of the United States Congress has adopted immigration laws that have generally fallen into two categories: racial and economic. On the one hand, immigration law has historically attempted to impede the entrance of the poor and those who could not provide for themselves. On the other hand, immigration law has also attempted to impede the entrance of racial minorities. In this project, I trace the history of immigration law and its relation to the idea of nation-building (via the selection or construction of the ideal immigrant). I then analyze the immigrant rights marches of 2006 and present the argument that in 2006 non-citizen immigrants, who have no rights, were able to take the rights of citizens and protests (and ultimately defeat) an anti-immigrant bill. In taking these rights, rights of protest and political organizing, immigrants challenged the historical trends of immigration law.
- ItemCircularity and Stability: A Proposed Reform to the Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits and Security Act of 2007(2008) Prianti, Marissa; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemDisengaging Morality and Legality: Undocumented Immigrants in the American Civic Consciousness(2003) Palta, Rina; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemDoes Anyone Here Speak American? Language, Race, and Citizenship in the United States(2007) Johnson, Kori; Beltrán, CristinaSe habla español. Three small words have come to symbolize more than a foreign language. They are dividing words: north vs. south, rich vs. poor, white vs. brown. They represent all that America is, the land of opportunity, and all that America is scared to be, the land of the poor bracero. They chronicle the struggle of a people who have fought to gain, and maintain, their independence from a Northern stronghold. As these words creep deeper into the red, white, and blue heartland, they open up the flood gates of controversy. The presence of Spanish in the United States has become one of the most highly contested issues of the new millennium. With an increase of immigrants from Latin America, the population demands a change in the current language system. Unlike other nations around the world, the United States is not known for its linguistic plurality. Of course there are American citizens who speak different languages, but English still dominates on the national arena. I have always questioned why the United States is so different from Europe when it comes to this issue. Why is it that countries like Belgium or Germany have residents who speak more than one language, yet in the U.S., people are up in arms about seeing Spanish in public places? The difference is that Europeans speak English, French, Italian, languages that invoke sophistication and class. They represent money, power, and progress. Spanish, on the other hand, does not carry the same social weight. It is not the language of art or love, but the language of poverty. Moreover, the champions of the Spanish-speaking world are not Michelangelo's or Monet's, but Guevara's and Garda Mάrquez's. This is not a world of porcelain princes, but bronzed gauchos. This essay explores the racialization of language in the United States. Looking at the English-Only movement and the current tensions surrounding Spanish in the United States, I show that these tensions are not based around linguistic conflicts but racial ones. I argue that unlike the previous immigration waves of the 19th and early 20th century, today's immigrants are more racially diverse, thus bringing about a new set of political, social, and cultural concerns. Negative images of Latin Americans fuel the English-Only movement and other assimilationist programs aimed at "Americanizing" new immigrants. The changing demographics of the American population separate English-Only in the United States from other national language debates because it inevitably links citizenship to race. Language becomes a means to ensure the domination of the white culture in the United States. I begin by looking at the current situation of Latin American immigrants in the United States. How do race and ethnicity influence notions of American citizenship in the 21st century? In comparing this immigrant group with those of the past, did 19th and early 20th century immigrants face similar hardships to the ones faced by today's immigrant population? Are there concurrent trends in discrimination between the past and the present? Distinguishing Latin American immigration as different from others exposes a new narrative distinct to a particular group of people with a particular tie to our nation. Next, I discuss what language is and how it functions in society. Does language play a part in identity construction? Is our access to goods related to which language we speak? What purpose does speaking English serve for American citizens? Following these questions is a discussion on Spanish in America. Does the Spanish language help uphold American ideals? How are its speaker perceived in a national and global context? These questions guide us to English-Only and race. Does the push to make English official reveal tensions surrounding a growing non-white population? Is American citizenship defined in a racial context? How are Spanish-speakers left out or incorporated into the American citizenry because of their race? Lastly, I argue for reconsidering how we use language in the United States. In today's society language is a vehicle to perpetuate racial homogeneity on the political, social, economic, and cultural level. I posit a notion of language as a cultural resource that should be available to all citizens. By placing language in a cultural context instead of a political or economic one, we construct more accurate representations of others and ourselves.
- ItemFeminism, Equality, and Soviet and Post-Soviet Russian Women(2001) Suter, Katherine J.; Beltrán, Cristina
- Item"Forward, Sisters, in the Struggle!": Gender Politics in the Young Lords Party, 1969-1976(2011) Alvarez, Alejandra M.; Beltrán, Cristina; Friedman, Andrew, 1974-1960s America was an era defined by the eruption of an array of political, cultural and social movements. With the intensification of the war in Vietnam and the growing dissatisfaction with the Civil Rights Movement's inability to create institutionalized change, students across the country took to the streets, protesting an array of social injustices and demanding change. In the midst of all of this social turmoil and political energy, the young Puerto Rican men and women of the Young Lords Party established themselves as a socialist Puerto Rican nationalist group from 1969 to 1976, focusing much of their efforts on empowering the poor, marginalized, Puerto Rican communities of New York City through their community-based "serve the people" programs. Throughout this thesis, I aim to explore the gender politics and integration of a feminist discourse within the Young Lords Party's revolutionary nationalist rhetoric. I argue that the women of the Young Lords Party initiated a feminist struggle within the party, urging it to incorporate a radical intersectional politics around race, class, sexuality and gender into their nationalist agenda. Due to the multifaceted nature of intersectional identity politics, these women developed a sense of political agency within the party via a complex intersectional way that also simultaneously made it more difficult for them to negotiate their own identity politics. As a paramilitary nationalist organization, the party's militant hypermasculine nationalist rhetoric both furthered and challenged this radical feminist discourse.
- ItemFrom Revolution to Democratic Transition: Mexican Political Culture In Implementing Political Change(2002) Yereniuk, Anne K.; Beltrán, Cristina; Krippner, James
- Item“I Thought You Were Going to Be Funny?” : How Jon Stewart Uses Media Satire to Take Journalism Seriously(2011) Gibson, Brad; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemJust Build a Fence: U.S.-Mexico Border Militarization and American Democracy in the 21st Century(2008) Shechtman, Ben; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemLet's Talk About Race: Black and Latin@ Coalitions(2011) Lopez, David; Beltrán, CristinaScholars have long debated why ethnic conflict exists and how biracial/ethnic coalitions can be formed. Most scholars have answered this question through four schools of thought: shared interest, shared ideology, intergroup competition theories and shared commonality. However, much of the scholarship on intergroup relations has focused on a White and Black dichotomy and has ignored possibilities of coalitions of other racial/ethnic groups such as Afro-Americans and Latin@s. In this thesis, I will first review the literature for each of the four schools of thought, while addressing perceptions and stereotypes as the cause of perceived conflict between Latin@s and Afro-Americans. I will argue that shared interests along with the coalition's active role in raising racial consciousness between Afro-Americans and Latin@s, which can be aided by addressing the issues of Afro-Latin@s within the Black and Latin@ communities, is crucial to the creation and success of African American and Latin@ coalitions.
- ItemLiberal Privacy and Women : A Broken Promise(2006) Theis, Adriane; Beltrán, CristinaMy thesis is about liberalism and its relation to women. I analyze liberal political theory, how that theory becomes embedded in the American Constitution, and eventually becomes the "right to privacy." Then I analyze feminist theorists and their critique of the right to privacy and law as a masculine discourse. Finally, I analyze feminist critiques of liberalism in general and the larger discourse of privacy. Ultimately, I conclude that liberalism is a worthwhile discourse for women's rights and women's advancement.
- ItemLiberal Virtues and Protestant Narratives: National Membership and Identity of the Mexican in America(2007) Sgobbo, Robert; Beltrán, CristinaOn January 7, 2004, President George W. Bush held a press conference in the East Room of the White House to outline his new proposal for a temporary immigrant worker program with Mexico. His outlined proposal called for the need to reform immigration law with the two-fold purpose of securing American national borders and providing economic opportunities to American industries and legal aliens across the country. President Bush’s proposal came in response to a rising public interest in illegal Mexican immigration into the United States. In the years following, Mexican immigrants have found themselves in a quagmire of political debate both within the halls of Congress, in the mainstream television and radio media and in the debates occurring in towns and cities across America. Through this political debate, philosophers and politicians alike point to a distinct American “anxiety” over the foreigner’s presence within the boundaries of the United States as fostering this sense of “urgency” on the part of ordinary Americans to address illegal immigration. There have been many arguments for addressing the seeming “problem” of illegal Mexican immigrants in America; varying from calls to protect the American economy and social service network from foreign dependency and exploitation, as well as “cultural” concerns for Americans needing to protect the United States’ distinct national values, ideals and ideologies. In looking at the rhetoric of President Bush in his guest worker proposal, as well as various other political speeches from the President and other political pundits addressing immigration in America, I have primarily become interested in understanding where does this “American anxiety” over Mexican immigration derive from, why does it occur within the realm of both national political debate and the opinions of individuals, and how this is affecting the identity of both Mexican immigrants living in the United States and Mexican American citizens. In order to tackle these important contexts for American anxiety of the foreigner, I seek to understand American responses to immigration as directly influenced by the conception and envisioning of the “American nation”; and the promotion of an ideology of “American nationalism”. In this thesis, I show how anxieties over Mexican immigration are directly linked to conflicting, yet surprisingly interdependent, ideologies and virtues of how the American nation ought to be constructed and ways which American citizenship ought to be defined. Through an investigatory look at the political, philosophical and ethnic resources that have helped construct how Americans envision the “American nation” and its stipulations for membership; we will be able to see there are two integral, yet conflicting, visions of the American nation state. These two visions can be best characterized by the philosophical and cultural forces they draw upon; whereby one vision of the American nation derives from classical liberal ideology of individual liberty and personal autonomy. These cherished “civic virtues” of the American nation are best embodied in the prose and philosophy of the American Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution. A second, and competing vision of the American nation, is steeped within the mythic of America’s “ethnic” founding of Anglo-Protestant settlers; which the religious and cultural ideology of Protestant asceticism, work ethic and social mobility have translated into American “cultural” values in our contemporary times. While theorists such as Rogers Smith contend these competing visions of the American nation are differentiated and inevitably separate, some philosophers such as Bonnie Honig argue for their expressed interdependence in contemporary American consciousness; understanding these “resources” in American political life as collectively working to create a complicated and interdependent relationship between the foreigner and the nation he immigrates to. Honig would claim the American civic philosophy of dedication towards classical liberalism is coupled, antagonistic and reliant upon the nation’s “illiberal” ideologies seeking to define American citizenship within narrow and exclusive terms of individuals who ascribe to Protestant cultural values of piety and work ethic. I am particularly interested in how American citizenship is created through this dialectic of “liberal” and “illiberal” influences within our national consciousness, and how these influences collectively establish a xenophobic anxiety within our national public policy, rhetoric and political opinions of Mexican immigrants. I will come to the conclusion that American citizenship fits well with Honig’s theory of an expression of both a “xenophilic” and “xenophobic” national consciousness; which American civic virtues are cherished in our national political culture, yet are reliant upon the immigrant foreigner for their expression and exclusion from national public life. I will investigate rhetoric of America as being an “immigrant nation” which seeks to be an inclusive and a welcoming land for foreigners; and how these ideologies shore up “good feelings” towards American liberal ideologies as the United States philosophically seeks to embrace the challenges of being a poly-ethnic state. These moments of “xenophilia” prove to only be punctuated by profound moments of xenophobia, which as we can see through the words of critics of Mexican immigration, there is a deep-seated anxiety in the American public that prevents the full expression and implementation of American liberal philosophies attempting to embrace the foreigner. In understanding why xenophobia exists in American political discourse despite a seeming dedication to American liberal values seeking cultural and ethnic inclusiveness, I will highlight the difficulties of Mexican Americans and Mexican immigrants to achieve political and cultural recognition in the United States. Through looking at attempts by Mexican Americans to promote their own political rights against discrimination in housing and job employment, as well as ways which xenophobic cultural barriers to social mobility have affected the personal lives of many recent Mexican immigrants in the United States, I come to the conclusion of advocating for a strengthening of liberal values of self-autonomy and individualism in American political culture. In the final portion of this project, I utilize the theories of contemporary liberal Charles Taylor who advocates for authenticity and the equal recognition of citizens in the political and private domain. In particular, Taylor’s theory of recognition amongst individuals has a contemporary applicability to the discourse of individualism and self-autonomy provided by the classical liberal resources to American civic nationalism. The addendum to liberalism proposed by Taylor calling for equal recognition proves to be a powerful influence if applied to American politics; which if promoted in tandem with cosmopolitan theories of intimacy of sharing “life narratives” amongst citizens, there can be profound implications for community building amongst individuals of different cultural backgrounds. Through using lessons learned from liberalism and cosmopolitanism, I seek to inject individualism as a “primary good” within American politics; in hopes that a celebration of self-autonomy would prevent xenophobic impulses towards foreigners from expressing itself in detrimental ways. In order to mitigate the “illiberal” influences of American nationalism through a strengthening of its “liberal” ideology, this thesis advances a proposal for a stronger political, social and cultural understanding amongst all individuals residing within the United States.
- ItemObstructing Democracy Abroad: U.S. Civil Society Assistance to Cuba(2002) Jacobstein, Eric; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemPerforming Blackness/Revealing Self: Machiavellian and Arendtian Actors in Post-Reconstruction America(2003) Miller, Greta; Beltrán, CristinaIn my thesis, I will be exploring what I deem a "tension" between fundamental drives -- the desire to pursue self-interest and the desire for recognition, the material and the spiritual -- that was, I argue, experienced by African-Americans in the time period that spans from the end of Reconstruction up to and through the civil rights movement. I will use the models of appearance offered to us by Niccolo Machiavelli, Plato and Hannah Arendt to help us to understand both how this tension came to exist, and the way in which African-Americans negotiated this tension in this time period. In my analysis of the negotiation of appearance by African-Americans I will rely on examples of what I deem specifically "political" appearance by black Americans offered by African-American political discourse.
- ItemPolitical Participation and Democratic Consolidation in Chile(2002) Ratigan, Kerry; Beltrán, CristinaTransition literature has focused on how to generate civil society after emerging from authoritarian rule, but does not address the de-generation of civil society in the consolidation phase. Much of transitology assumes that institutional democracy provides the opportunity for the creation of civil society, where none existed. However, this literature often ignores the possibility that democratic consolidation may demobilize an historically vibrant civic culture. Transition from an authoritarian regime may inherently problematize the creation, or even the maintenance of a politically active population. In addition, when an extreme neo-liberal economic model is implemented before or during democratic consolidation, this further complicates political participation and the creation of the collective identity necessary to encourage the development of civil society actors. The legacy of authoritarian rule and neo-liberal economic structures change both the relationship of the state to the citizen as well as the relationships between citizens, thereby impeding the generation (or maintenance) of civil society while consolidating democracy today. Democracy and civil society theorists have debated the actual and ideal relationship between civil society and the state. Since Alexis de Toqueville, theorists have discussed the degree to which civil society should be active to promote a democracy. Contemporary theorists such as Robert D. Putnam and Chilean sociologist Tomas Moulian also discuss the possibilities for civil society as well as the problems for democracy that may arise from a demobilized citizenry. In Developing Democracy, a comprehensive overview of democratic consolidation, Larry Diamond outlines many of the changing dynamics that have and continue to effect the generation and preservation of civil society. However, theorists rarely juxtapose democratic theory with civil society literature and the dynamics of mobilization and de-mobilization in a post-authoritarian regime. Combining democracy and civil society literature not only offers theoretical insights, but can also explain the de-generation of civil society, in democratic consolidation, even where one might expect a flourishing of political particip~tion in the democratic opening. Chile, now more than a decade after the transition to institutional democracy, provides a case where one would expect the democratic opening to result in increased political participation and a re-generation of civil society. Paradoxically, all forms of political participation, from voting (see Appendix A) to active mobilization, have decreased.1 Political theorists, such as Toqueville, have imagined how democracies can decay, often facilitated by an increasingly inactive citizenry. Therefore, this paper promotes the construction of a more participatory model of democracy. Furthermore, by increasing participation, policy outcomes tend to be more equal and democratic, creating a "virtuous cycle." (Huber, Rueschemeyer and Stephens) Chilean democracy can either continue to consolidate an institutional, or "formal," democracy which could then deteriorate into democratic "despotism," or could, through this transitive moment, develop an active citizenry and deepen democracy, and advance toward a participatory, and eventually, social democracy. The Chilean case reveals possible problems for the preservation of civil society that theorists neglect or understate, such as the legacy of a dictatorship, the inherent challenges that associations face after a period of transition to democracy and the maintenance of civil society in a neo-liberal economic model. While democracy and civil society theory provide a useful framework for approaching the case, Chile then offers new considerations for the theoretical literature.
- ItemRedrawing Membership Circles: The Connection Between Welfare, Welfare Reform, and Conceptions of Legal Immigrants in American Society(2003) Ramirez, Angelica; Beltrán, Cristina
- ItemSaving Public Schools in Our Democracy: A Shift in Education Culture and Away from Standard-Based Reform(2004) Cruz, Claritza; Beltrán, Cristina