Drawing from nearly four years of qualitative research, this article examines the lives of three second-generation mexicanas living in northern California who maintain close ties to their families' natal communities in Mexico. This ethnographic portrait outlines the contours of belonging in these spaces, including the affection and close relationships established with members in Mexico and the enactment of their ritual and spiritual personae in local religious shrines in Jalisco. While the youth and other family members experience certain discrimination and marginalization in the United States—or are not treated as full citizens because they are immigrants of color—the local and family knowledge that the young women gain during their return trips to Mexico serves as a powerful counter-story of existence and helps temper the subtractive aspects of assimilation.


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pp. 49-66
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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