Sociology Professor Gilda Ochoa Offers a New Book on Power and Solidarity in the L.A. Chicano Community
"Becoming Neighbors in a Mexican American Community: Power, Conflict, and Solidarity" is the newest book by Gilda Ochoa, associate professor of sociology and Chicana/o Studies. Focusing on the Mexican-origin, working-class city of La Puente in Los Angeles County, Ochoa examines Mexican Americans' everyday attitudes toward and interactions with Mexican immigrants. Using in-depth interviews, participant observations, school board meeting minutes, and other historical documents, Ochoa investigates how Mexican Americans negotiate their relationships with immigrants at an interpersonal level. Her research into daily lives highlights the centrality of women in the process of negotiating and building communities and sheds new light on identity formation and group mobilization in the U.S. and on educational issues, especially bilingual education.