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Mixed Race History Paper

1641 words - 7 pages

Understanding history through a larger or societal perspective can often give us a great insight into the thinking, emotions, and mindset of an entire population throughout and era. However, by conducting oral history of everyday individuals who lived through an era we can get a first hand perspective and perhaps arguably a better understanding of history and questions we may have regarding history. We may even gain insight into our own lives such as where we come from. In this instance Oralia Peralta, my mother, helped give great insight into history from 1959 to the present, and helped me better understand the attitudes, mindsets, and practices regarding race relations during here ...view middle of the document...

By examining these similarities and differences it becomes evident that both these similarities and differences have helped shape her identity as an individual and also her perspective on race relations. Oralia’s life also has also helped me learn aspects of history that I perhaps would not have learned or understood quite as well through the traditional means of reading the history books.
By interviewing Oralia, one conclusion I was able to draw was that Oralia’s life would often reflect many of the common themes illustrated in the reading throughout this course. One aspect I found similar to other individuals stories in history was how Oralia and Julio were brought together by financial circumstances of both themselves and their families. As we have observed throughout history often people are drawn to a foreign countries because of the promise of opportunity for economic success and the promise of a better life. This is evident in many of the readings throughout this course such as the French in Louisiana in They Need Wives: Metissage and the Regulation of Sexuality in French Louisiana by Jennifer M. Spears. In her article the French were enticed to come to this colony in order to gain wealth, and during their stay developed intimate relationships with Native American women. This themes was also evident for the individuals in the documentary Roots in the Sand. In this instance, relationships between Punjabi (Indians) and Mexican came about because of the work opportunity in Southern California’s Imperial Valley. We can refer even to the earliest history of America when the English first established the colonies for profitable ventures which resulted in relationships between Native American Women and English such as the marriage between Pocahontas and John Rolfe. These are a few of many examples, but help illustrate a common theme in America. Often once in a foreign land these migrants develops long lasting relationships with the individuals they meet in these regions. Oralia and Julio’s case is no exception. Oralia explains that she and her family initially lived in Fresno California. However, because of work opportunities near Redlands, California that her family would move to this region and then move again to Corona, California where she would meet her future husband Julio. As she explains Julio, an immigrant from Guerrero, Mexico, also was seeking better economic opportunity in the United States which brought him to Corona, California where Oralia and Julio would meet each other. Oralia explains that her husband, Julio, as a child and as a teenager in Mexico would often see his family and friends bring home to Mexico large sums of money which she explains they earned in America, and because of this, Julio sought to capitalize on this opportunity for higher wages and a better life, and was enticed to come to America at the age of seventeen. This theme is evident in Becoming Mexican American by Georgia J. Sanchez who sates, “After the...

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