Carey McWilliam's North From Mexico, first published in 1949, is a classic survey of Chicano history that continues to have a major influence on studies of the Mexican-American experience today. Widely used in college courses on Chicano and Southwestern history and culture, the volume provides a comprehensive general history of the Mexican experience in the United States, beginning with the early aboriginal inhabitants. Now fully updated by Matt S. Meier to cover the period 1945 through 1988, North From Mexico explores all aspects of the Chicano experience in the United States including family, employment, education, assimilation, political, cultural, and economic issues. Particularly valuable is the inclusion of current statistical and census data on immigration patterns, educational and voting characteristics, and social and economic trends in the Hispanic population.
Material new to this edition includes an overview of the development of Mexican-American organizations and leaders and the struggle for greater acceptance in American society that has characterized the Mexican-American experience in recent decades. Particular attention is focused on the movimiento, the movement for civil and political equality with other Americans. Meier stresses the cultural aspects of the movement and profiles key leaders. Among the other issues central to the Mexican-American experience since 1945 which receive detailed coverage are the immigration and naturalization of Mexicans, the social and economic role of undocumented workers from Mexico, and the effects of the Simpson-Rodino Immigration Reform and Control Act. Meier also contrasts the considerable achievements of Mexican-Americans in the political and cultural spheres with the persistently high rates of unemployment and poverty that continue to plague the Hispanic population. With the addition of Meier's perceptive analysis of the past four decades, North From Mexico stands once again as the definitive source on the historical experience of Chicanos in the United States.