Discovery of his roots leads him to track history of Chinese in Mexico

Posted in Articles, Biography, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Mexico, Religion, United States on 2013-01-07 04:00Z by Steven

Discovery of his roots leads him to track history of Chinese in Mexico

UCLA Today
Faculty and Staff News

Letisia Marquez

Growing up in a predominantly white Los Angeles County suburb, Robert Chao Romero, an assistant professor of Chicana and Chicano studies, learned to hide his Chinese background.
The son of a Chinese mother and Mexican father, Romero recalled starting the first grade in Hacienda Heights and a classmate telling him an anti-Chinese joke.
“It was just a dumb kid’s joke, but it sort of sent the message to me that being Chinese is bad,” he added…

…One tidbit that had always intrigued Romero was that his parents knew a Chinese family who had lived in Mexico for many years. He decided to look into the history of Chinese Mexicans and discovered that although Spanish professors had written about the population, he could not find a book about Chinese Mexicans in English.
“The more I explored the topic, the more I realized this is a rich history that’s a forgotten history for the most part,” Romero said. “And I think a large part of the reason it’s forgotten is because it’s a dark chapter, unfortunately.”
Years later, Romero completed “The Chinese in Mexico, 1882-1940,” (University of Arizona, 2010) book which details the tragic history of Chinese immigrants in Mexico…

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