History ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 4-15-2022


My dissertation explores the Latino experience in Santa Clara County, especially in San Jose. The area, located in Northern California’s Bay Area, is nestled just south of the more popular cities of Oakland and San Francisco, nearly five hundred miles from the U.S.-Mexico border. My examination of the social, cultural, and political activities of Latinos in San Jose provides insight into the community development of ethnic Mexicans away from traditional sites of study in places like Tucson, San Antonio, and Los Angeles. I argue that beginning at mid-century, Latinos moved into the downtown area and helped prevent nearby neighborhoods from experiencing depopulation, minimizing some of the impacts of white flight experienced by many other cities across the country. In addition, I argue ethnic Mexicans claimed space downtown through social-cultural activities, allowing them to make political inroads and eventually finding representation in city council with the arrival of district elections.

Level of Degree


Degree Name


Department Name


First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Samuel Truett

Second Committee Member

Dr. Andrew K. Sandoval Strausz

Third Committee Member

Dr. Barbara O. Reyes

Fourth Committee Member

Dr. Larry Ball

Fifth Committee Member

Dr. Manuel Garcia Y Griego




Urban, Latino, San Jose, Politics, ethnic Mexican, Mexican American

Document Type