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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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The Roles Chicanas Play In Community Activism
Program #
Politics, Society

Women's Issues
Linda Fregoso
Estella López
Apr 9, 1980

The Roles Chicanas Play in Community Activism

Guest Estella Lopez discusses the battle to save public education from the voucher system and the development of Chicana activism. Lopez explains that while Chicanos have made some gains since the 1960s, the community is still dealing with issues of racism and the quality of education. One of the biggest challenges Chicanos face comes from the voucher education system recently passed in California and Texas. Lopez explains that the system in California would do away with public schools and place the burden of education on the parents who would receive money to develop their own schools. Lopez argues that this program would be disastrous for Chicanos, who already have the highest drop-out rate in California. She also explains other California legislations that are threatening Chicanos including Proposition 9, which would reduce funds for community social service programs. In response, community activists are going to door, holding coffee klatches and making sure people know the social costs of these laws.

In the second half of the interview, Lopez talks about women’s participation in community activism. She explains that women play a major role in activism on campuses and in communities, and are becoming increasingly vocal and assertive. She notes that more and more women are taking on leadership roles and running for political office as they capitalize on the contacts they have made through their work, their neighborhoods and their children.


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

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