Buenas Dias, Y’all: Latinos in the South

James Lamare, J. L. Polinard, Joseph Stewart and Robert D. Wrinkle

in The Oxford Handbook of Southern Politics

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780195381948
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Buenas Dias, Y’all: Latinos in the South


The past twenty years have witnessed a significant migration of Latinos, both native- and foreign-born, both legal and undocumented, into the Deep South. Indeed a growing body of scholarship refers to this geographical region as the Nuevo South. The increased appearance of and taste for “Mexican food” is just one of the, albeit minor, consequences of this immigration phenomenon. This article examines the growth of the Latino population in the former Confederate states and analyzes the policy and political consequences of the region's new ethnic diversity. Of course, Florida and Texas historically have had large Latino populations and rich traditions of bicultural environments. While their cultural and historical Latino roots run far deeper than in the rest of the southern states, one can no longer exclude the rest of the South when discussing the impact of the growing Latino populations.

Keywords: immigration; Latinos; ethnic diversity; southern states; Latino populations; Mexican food

Article.  5188 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; US Politics

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