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The KUT Longhorn Radio Network Presents: Mexican American Experience Collection

Audio recordings including interviews, music, and informational programs related to the Mexican American community and their concerns in the series "The Mexican American Experience" and "A esta hora conversamos" from the Longhorn Radio Network, 1976-1982.

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A People Of Custom And Tradition
Program #

Family, Social Issues
Richard Goodman
Richard Goodman
Sep 14, 1976

A People of Custom and Tradition

Host Richard Goodman discusses some of the customs and traditions of Chicanos and they ways in which they have changed over the years. He begins with the celebrations that occurred after communal labor, when Mexican Americans got together to help perform the harvest or round up cattle. After such labor-intensive jobs, communities would have a feast or play competitive games. While the men slaughtered the pig or competed against each other, the women would prepare food, like tamales or other dishes. These moments allowed men and women to come together to relax and celebrate after periods of hard work. As Chicanos became increasingly urbanized, the celebrations became less associated with communal labor.

Weddings and quinceñeras are two other significant traditions for Mexican Americans. In the past, the groom demonstrated his economic potential by throwing elaborate weddings. Nowadays, it is the bride’s parents, with the help of the wedding party for the celebration. Likewise, families throw elaborate quinceñeras on the occasion of their daughters’ 15th birthday to present her to society.

Religious customs include Los Días de los Muertos, or the Days of the Dead, and Saints’ Days. Goodman claims that these customs, while once widely celebrated, follow the declining religiosity of Mexican-Americans.


Center for Mexican American Studies | Department of History | The Benson Latin American Collection

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