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Extremism in America$
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George Michael

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780813044972

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813044972.001.0001

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The Chicano Separatist Movement

The Chicano Separatist Movement

(p.114) Chapter 4 The Chicano Separatist Movement
Extremism in America

Donald W. Trivett

University Press of Florida

This chapter takes a close look at Chicano nationalism in the United States. Like other marginal ideologies, the movement employs a combination of legal and illegal means to accomplish its political objectives. However, its illicit activities do not usually involve physical violence but rather tend to undermine institutions that hinder its nationalist goals by exploiting ambiguous and/or unenforced government policies. The movement’s greatest hope for achieving its nationalist vision of a Chicano homeland in the U.S. Southwest is through the extensive, demographic change produced by illegal immigration. With a political majority, the Chicano separatist movement could secure an independent state through the electoral process, thus obviating the need for armed conflict. The concepts of multiculturalism and free migration are often used by Chicano activists to justify these policies, which ironically are intended to give birth to a well-defined, homogenous state. Political identity for members of the Chicano separatist movement is primarily defined by race, ethnicity, language, and class. Aztlán is thus envisioned to be a Spanish-speaking, dark-skinned, Chicano nation of laborers of the land.

Keywords:   Aztlán, Chicano, Mexican irredentism, separatist

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