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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 Retrospective With Mexican American Experience Host Dr. Andres Tijerina Part II
Program #

John Mckiernan-Gonzalez
Andres Tijerina

A retrospective with Mexican American Experience host Dr. Andres Tijerina Part II

This is the second part of the interview.

Dr. Andres Tijerina reflects on his public life as a student and a historian. He begins with his life growing up homeless working in the fields of West Texas, and the contradiction he experienced being told he was only American but being treated and excluded as a foreigner and a Mexican. His experience of exclusion created a void and a desire for a history that would explain his community’s experiences. He goes on to discuss the impact of being a minority in a meritocratic community at Texas A & M, his combat experience in Vietnam, and the ways he was mentored at Texas Tech by Allwyn Barr and Dr. Figness. This was a startling contrast to his experience of segregation at the University of Texas at Austin. He discusses the ways Mexican American graduate students created an esprit-de-corps, and became involved in the administration of the library and ultimately became involved in the greater east Austin community. His participation in The Mexican American Experience grew out of the social and political networks forged in east Austin.

Dr. Andres Tijerina then discusses the way his work as a historian opened a career in public service in the State of Texas and the Texas Good Neighbor Commission. Even while he was fully immersed in his work in the GNC and in Motorola, he kept his foot in the Texas State Historical Association. After his dissertation became a standard text for Texas historians, he decided to turn it into a book, and left Motorola for a job at Texas A&I. Ultimately, his wife asked him to abandon Kingsville and commit to her career here in Austin. The comversation ended with a discussion of current public history projects, including his research on Austin’s segregation of Mexican-Americans for the Supreme Court suit, Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District No. 1 v. Eric Holder.


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

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