Date of Graduation

Fall 12-15-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in International Studies (MAIS)


College of Arts and Sciences


International Studies

First Advisor

Rose Jiménez

Second Advisor

Christopher Loperena


This paper examines the identity construction of Afro-Latinas/os/x in the San Francisco Bay and Los Angeles Area. Marginalized communities predominately Black and Latina/ o/x concentrated are at the epicenter of disenfranchisement caused by the globalization of neoliberalism. Neoliberal reforms to education restrain the various nuances of pluralistic teaching, focusing only on the performance of standardized tests thus pressuring schools to center their interest in securing funding. This has greater implications for low-income communities of color where multicultural pedagogy is limited. More importantly, this association of neoliberalism reforms to education affects Afro-Latinx individuals, because they are maligned in the conversation about inclusion. At the core of this research, it was imperative to understand how Afro-Latinx adults understand their identity development. Education and community organized spaces are to be analyzed to evaluate whether a strong identity construction contributes to civic participation. I conducted ethnographic observations of three community events, fifteen semi-structured interviews, and fifteen surveys. The findings from this study may provide clarity for individuals serving to act on these conditions and take action in order to improve them.