This chapter examines the evolution of a variety of expressions of ethnic Mexican self-ascription in the mid-twentieth century, first as Mexican Americans, later as Pachuca/os in youth culture, and then as politicized Chicana/os. It discusses the patterns of flow between Mexico and the United States that constantly renewed Latin cultural influences in Southern California and deepened interconnections between American and Mexican cultures, beginning with the surge in Mexican migration to the United States after the Mexican Revolution in the 1920s, followed by the repatriation of Mexicans to Los Angeles during the 1930s and the recruitment of Mexican laborers to the United States in the 1940s under the Bracero program. The chapter also explores how Chicana/os started to articulate a cultural nationalism that redefines ethnic Mexicans' relation to place in the lands ceded by Mexico to the United States; this was enshrined in a cultural manifesto entitled El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán (The Spiritual Plan of Aztlán).
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