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Latina Magazine and the Invocation of a Panethnic Family: Latino Identity as It Is Informed by Celebrities and Papis Chulos

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Latina magazine is a bilingual women's magazine that was launched in 1996 for a target audience of bicultural college-educated Latinas between the ages of 18 and 45. In an attempt to reach such a wide range of Latinas, the magazine makes an appeal to familial forms of identification, often presenting discourses of familial allegiances alongside calls for panethnic solidarity. This article presents a case study of the construction of Latinidad through a textual analysis of Latina articles on entertainment and romance and through interviews with the magazine's editorial staff. Latina oscillates between celebrating the inclusion of Latina/os in the U.S. entertainment industry and speaking out against the criminalization of Latino men and the hypersexualization of Latina/os. This study situates the creation of Latino media in relation to theories of panethnic identification and research on the ideological function of popular culture and the marketing of ethnicity.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Communication, University of California, San Diego

Publication date: April 1, 2004


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