Political Science ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 4-30-2018


Much debate surrounds the emergence of the term "Latinx." While some have argued against its usage, others have deeply embraced it as a way of representing the gender diversity found within the Latina/o community. Yet, these arguments do not transcend the boundaries of gender to include other facets of identity subverted within the concept of Latinidad. This project seeks to extend the boundaries of Latinx to include other areas of identity that are inherent parts of being a Latino in the United States, including sexuality, African roots, indigeneity, among others. This dissertation seeks to understand whether our rigid conceptualization of Latinidad affected our understanding of Latino Politics. To investigate this complex question, I designed a mixed-method community engaged study. Utilizing the 2016 Collaborative Multiracial Post-election Survey (CMPS 3) (N= 10,145) and the national qualitative study the Queering Latinidad Project (N=24), I explore how gender and sexuality affect Latinx political behavior, public opinion, labor force participation, and identity. Analyses of both quantitative and qualitative data reveal that gender and sexuality do indeed influence various facets of Latinx identities and politics. I argue for the need for a more holistic understanding of Latina/o/x communities in social science. As the processes of homogenization further subvert various facets of identity, we obscure important differences found within Latina/o/x communities.

Degree Name

Political Science

Level of Degree


Department Name

Political Science

First Committee Member (Chair)

Gabriel R. Sanchez

Second Committee Member

Kathy L. Powers

Third Committee Member

Timothy Krebs

Fourth Committee Member

Kendra Koivu

Project Sponsors

Robert Wood Johnson Center for Health Policy, LGBTQ+ Resource Center, University of New Mexico


Latinx, political behavior, public opinion, Latino, Latina

Document Type