Attention Statement and introduction
In the attentions statement, it is important to take into note the two most important aspects of discussion; Chicanos and Prejudice. It is important that these two elements be provided with the required attention. The attention statement should not only work towards introducing these aspects of the discussion, but also challenge the audience to internalize on the entire topic (Burma).
Also referred to as Chicana, the term Chicano is commonly employed in presenting a chosen identity that is affiliated with the Mexican-Americans who residen the United States. The term is used interchangeably between the Mexicans and the Americans. In defining and providing information about this term, it is important to underscore the fact that the term is employed differently in the various parts shaping up the Southwest. It is also important to introduce the historic Chicano Movement and how it has affected the use and evolution of this term. The tern not only became popular, but also evolved in the course of the Chicano Movement. The evolution that took place during the famous Chicano Movement can be analyzed in light of the various expressions of ethnicity, community, kinship, identity, and culture (Burma).
The term discrimination is also an important element of analysis with regard to this discussion. Although it is most defined and described as an action, it is important to underscore that discrimination transcends action and includes thought processes and perceptions. The term discrimination refers to the sum of thought processes and actions that are designed and perpetuated to deny a section of society in undertaking specified social activities and or enjoying specified human rights based on the sole element of prejudice (Burma).
Prejudice refers to the act of making a pre-informed judgment about a person, an opinion, or a section of the society without taking into account the relevant facts that undergird the matter at hand. Some of the grounds through which prejudice is practiced and or developed include religion, race, gender, social class, sexuality, nationality, language, ethnicity, disability, nationality, age, or any other form of personal characteristic. Unlike discrimination, prejudice can be either positive or negative. While discrimination presents a collection of negative thought processes and actions, prejudice can be used to mean either positive or negative thought processes or actions (Acun?a).
In the analysis of the term – and concept – of Chicano, it is important to use the Chicano Movement as a turning point between the perceptions of the people with a Mexican descent living in America. Before the Chicano Movement, the term was used in as a negative connotation when referring to the Mexicans, and people with a Mexican descent, that lived within the American society. After the Chicano Movement, there was a change that took place with regards to this perception but this did not alter the entire perception of the American society with regards to the usage of the term. Within the American society, a section of the society still uses the term to provoke and communicate negative connotations to this day. The conservative section of the Mexican people and people with a Mexican descent living in America still view the terms usage as being the same with what existed before the Chicano Movement. This section of the Mexican-American population – and other people with the same viewpoint – is the main audience being addressed in the course of the speech. It is important to underscore the fact that a great section of the society has changed its perception with regard to the usage and interpretation of the term. Both the interpretation and usage of this term affect the entire course and cause of the speech (Burma).
Presenting and expounding on the various meanings that have been attached to the term is also an important element in the course of the presentation. Some of the meanings that have been attached to this term include political advice, ethnic identity, indigenous identity, political identity, ambiguous identity, historic origins, and as a term of derision. Each of these terms presents a unique context that is importan t to underscore with regard to communicating the topic of discrimination and how it relates to the usage of the term Chicano (Acun?a).
As a term of derision, it is important to provide background information about the term’s usage in Mexico and other places. Within the Mexican society, there has been a gradual transformation that has taken place with regard to the usage and interpretation of this term. While the term might have been initially used look down on the Mexicans, there has been a great transformation with regards to its initial usage. Today, the term has been transformed from a term of derision – especially on grounds of class and ethnicity – to a term that is used to present ethnic pride within the Mexican-American Communities. During and after the course of the Chicano Movement, the term has been used – especially by the Mexicans – to present their pride and attachment to their ethnicity. This is an important element of analysis and presentation throughout the course of the speech (Burma).
In addressing the topic of ethnic identity, it is important to explore the usage of the term both within and outside the Chicano communities prior and after the American civil rights movements. Popularly, the term was widely employed in the open outside the various Chicano communities. During the 1960’s – especially in the mid 1960’s – the term was employed by Mexican-American activists in their bid to reassert various civil rights. These activities invested in ways through which they would get rid of the polarizing negative connotation that was attached to the term. This was mainly done through reasserting the unique ethical identity that is viewed to this day. The political consciousness presented in the term is also an important element of analysis and presentation with regard to the speech. The Mexican-Americans began to proudly identify themselves using the term – Chicano – through employing the political consciousness and the unique ethnic identity (Burma).
The elements of political identity and ambiguous identity are also important elements of presentation with regard to the speech. In discussing the topic of political identity, it is important to look at how the term inspired the various Mexican-American citizens in the various revolts and movements. Here, it is important to look at the works and investments of Cesar Chavez as well as movements such as the Anglo-American Youth Revolt. The 1960’s and 1970’s are an important element of analysis with regard to this presentation. The ambiguous and indigenous identities are also important elements of analysis with regards o the presentation. Here, it is important to outline some of the leaders such as Leo Limon, Ruben Salazar, and Bruce Novoa and their contributions with regard to the usage and interpretation of the term in the different Mexican-American Societies (Acun?a).
Acun?a, Rodolfo. Occupied America: A History of Chicanos. New York: Pearson Longman, 2004. Print.
Burma, John H. Mexican-americans in the United States: a Reader. Cambridge, Mass.: Schenkman Pub. Co.; distributed by Canfield Press, 1970. Print.