Reactive Activism as Compared to

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

By 1969 the battle has been half won. El Grito Del Norte expanded the movement by creating international awareness of the position of the Chicano in the U.S. society. The maturity of the movement can be gauged by this statement: "The idea of the new man (and new woman) is the realization that human beings have no limit for development. They have great capacity. They can be unselfish, and without envidia. The can all work together for the common good. They can be freed from the pressure of getting money, and become real humans instead of work-machines."

The basic premise had been to create awareness of the potential of the participants. At the time the Chicano could only associate America with a prosperous future and negates the fact that social development was critical for the achievement of their goals. Literacy experience has been far from the minds of these participants. The key to progress thus had been to forward the idea that man need development and he has great potential to expand his horizon; he need not remain within the dimension outlined by the dominant population of the U.S. One needs to be selfish to achieve one's social goals. In stating the above, El Grito del Norte created a consistent drive for the achievement of the movement's goals [Mariscal, 2002].

Yet despite this fact the climax of this movement did not come about until 1970 when the Brigade experience forced the Chicanos to spread their ideas through academic reprehensive and through student bodies. And most important of all it has been during this Brigade experience that the Chicano realized their cultural identity. "Our political activities have now transcended reformist demands. Now the U.S. government knows that before it tries another Bay of Pigs, it will first have to contend with the Southwest. Chicanos will help bring the struggle of liberation home to Latin Americans within the United States."

Activism for the social scenario of the Chicanos had been an act against the oppression and dominance of the majority population. Had the whites not oppressed Chicanos to the extent of inhumane treatment, the Chicanos would not have reacted to such a capacity. The initiation of the movement and the gradual development of the movement as have been noted went hand in hand. To be able to gain the attention of the U.S. government in mandating work place requirements as well as increase in the workers' rights through union demands all greatly contributed to the Latin American community in the U.S. But the most important fact has been that the Chicanos' efforts in activism in gathering, communicating and in supporting the movement to the national and then later on international level which have made it a great success [Mariscal, 2002].

Conclusion

To conclude, activism can be reactive as well as proactive. In the case of the Chicano movement, the counter measures to white supremacy and dominance had been reactive activism. As the Chicanos struggled they realized that they need to be equal to the whites in order to fight for their rights. A laid back stance would not have proven any benefits and thus they focused on the literacy campaigns and awareness building which became the base for their campaign's success.

References

Mariscal, Jorge. Left turns in the Chicano movement, 1965-1975. Monthly Review, July-August, 2002.

Meier, Matt S., and Rivera, Feliciano. The Chicanos: A History of Mexican-Americans. New York: Hill and Wang, 1972.

The Rise of the UFW. Accessed on 17-4-2003. http://www.ufw.org/ufw.htm

Levinson, Sandra and Brightman, Carol eds., Veneremos Brigade: Young Americans Sharing the Life and Work of Revolutionary Cuba, New York: Simon and Schuster, 1971, 235.

El Grilo del Norte, May 19, 1969, 8-9; June 14, 1969.

The Rise of the UFW. Accessed on 17-4-2003. http://www.ufw.org/ufw.htm

El Grilo del Norte, May 19, 1969, 8-9; June 14, 1969, 12. For additional information on Longeaux y Vasquez's Cuban experience, see Dionne Espinoza, Pedagogies of Nationalism and Gender. Cultural Resistance in Selected Representational Practices of Chicana/o Movement Activists, 1967-1972, Cornell University Ph.D. dissertation, 1996, 147-187.

Sandra Levinson and Carol Brightman, eds., Veneremos Brigade: Young Americans Sharing the Life and Work of Revolutionary Cuba (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1971), 235. The first U.S. brigade in 1969 was only 10%…