Pew Research survey shows Mexican-Americans' identity within U.S. culture varies by generation

Cinco de Mayo, May 5, commemorates the 1862 Battle of Puebla between the victorious ragtag army of largely Mexican Indian soldiers against the invading French forces of Napoleon III. The day also recognizes the heritage and culture of Mexican-Americans.

In light of the holiday, Pew Research took a look at how Mexican-Americans identify their culture here in the U.S.        

According to a 2011 survey, 52 percent of the 33.7 million Hispanics of Mexican origin in the United States call themselves "Mexican" or Mexicano." Twenty-six percent described themselves as Hispanic or Latino and 19 percent said they were American.

The survey also broke down those results by generation. It showed 66 percent of Mexican immigrants referred to themselves as Mexican, 39 percent of second-generation and only 32 percent of third-generation said they were Mexican.  Only three percent of immigrants called themselves Americans, while 45 percent of third generation Mexicans said they were Americans.  

The study saw the same trend when the same group was asked whether they saw themselves as "typical Americans." Seventy-one percent of third-generation Mexicans did; 63 percent of first-generation Mexicans did not.


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