CHICANO! The History of the Mexican American Civil Rights Movement is a detailed account of the Mexican-American struggle to obtain and safeguard their civil rights from 1848 to the present history, highlighting three episodes in Mexican-American history that demonstrate the links between the Chicano Movement and past U.S. Mexican efforts to fight for political rights.
Chapter one traces the experiences of the “lost-land” generation, Mexicans who resided in what is now the U.S. Southwest, struggling to assert their rights when their land was taken from them after the Mexican-American War. Chapters two to five uncover the period of
“México Lindo” nationalism in the early twentieth century, when many U.S. Mexicans reestablished strong ties with Mexico as a means to protect themselves from a hostile American public. Chapters six and seven discuss Mexican Americanism, a period that began around the Great Depression, when many U.S. Mexicans used assimilation as a means to empower themselves. Finally, chapters eight to fourteen provide a detailed
analysis of the key leaders, issues, and tactics of the Chicano Movement of the 1960s and 1970s, a landmark period when Mexican Americans, particularly youth, took action to gain their full rights as citizens while celebrating their Mexican cultural heritage.