Subtle but Loaded: White and Latina/o College Student Perceptions of Inequality Across Racial and Gender Lines
Event: Undergraduate Research Symposium
Date: May 18, 2019
Location: UCI Student Center
Presenter: Socorro Cambero
Mentor: Gilberto Conchas
Title: Subtle but Loaded: White and Latina/o College Student Perceptions of Inequality Across Racial and Gender Lines
A vast body of literature examines the role systemic inequalities and cultural factors play in the life trajectory of minoritized individuals. However, little work unravels the ways in which individuals themselves understand the inequality they experience. To fill this gap, this project will explore the extent to which first generation Latina college students at a large research university describe, perceive, and explain opportunity and inequality along gender lines. Drawing on interviews with Latina and Latino first generation college students, I will utilize Chicana Feminist Theories—mestiza consciousness and borderlands theory—to unpack how Latinas draw upon their identities and experiences when they conceptualize inequality. The descriptive data indicates that Latinas identified racism, income, and gender discrimination. Latinas conveyed intersectional approaches when discussing inequality in America, whereas Latinos in the study were more likely to rely solely on race and class to explain inequality. The results of this project shed light on how gender contributes to different conceptualizations of stratification and marginalization in the United States. Moreover, the results will illuminate how Latinas resist dominant ideologies deeming the Latinx community as deficient and how they view their roles as monumental to changing the discourse.