Mexicans came to Minnesota in the 1920s as seasonal agricualtral workers. Over time, new waves of Mexican immigrants and migrants have come to Minnesota for work and for family reunification.

In our research on Mexican Facebook groups and pages it proved difficult to find discussions that were related to the specific kinds of identity questions we initially posed for Minnesota 2.0. We found many sites promoting specific products within Mexico itself (Diesel Mexico, iPhone Mexico, etc) as well as numerous Mexican restaurants spread throughout the world. While these are an important dimension of the overall Mexican presence on Facebook they did not contain material related to ethnic identity negotiation and they far outnumbered those pages that did. We also had to distinguish between Mexican and a broader Latino/a identification.

 The challenges we experienced in researching Mexican Facebook materials are both a product of Facebook itself and also of the long historical relationship between Mexico and the United States. There is a much longer history of Mexicans emigrating to and settling in the United States than of Somali and Hmong. The long-term presence of Mexicans in America means they have become integrated into American popular culture and to a much more higher degree than we found for recent immigrant groups like the Somali or Hmong. Paradoxically, then, we have a smaller number of Pages, Groups, and discussions in the Mexican section of the Minnesota 2.0 archive, reflecting both this long history as well as our research focus, which was on personal identity and not on commercial relations between the U.S. and Mexico. 

Four Themes:

  • Language: In this section Facebook groups and pages reflected debates about the use  Spanish vs. English vs. Spanglish and about the role language plays in personal identity. 
  • Immigration and other issues: In this section we explore Facebook materials that engage in political issues in the United States and, specifically, debates on immigration reform. 
  • Heritage and Cultural Self-Identification: In this section, Faceboook groups and pages demonstrate a desire for ethnic pride and a celebration of Mexican culture. There is also discussion about being Mexican-American and what it means to identify as Mexican and American simultaneously.
Subpages (2): Language Overview