Mexicans Now, Italians Then: Intermarriage Patterns
This working paper continues earlier efforts to compare the experiences of today's second-generation Mexican Americans with those of second-generation members of major immigrant groups of a century ago. Here the focus is on intermarriage. Contemporary data comes from 1998-2001 CPS data sets and historical data from the IPUMS data sets for 1920 and 1960. As in earlier papers, the precise definition of the relevant second-generation members is an important dimension of the work. In this paper the definition of outmarriage is important as well. The major conclusion is that outmarriage of second-generation Mexican Americans may seem low in absolute terms, but is comparable to the outmarriage rates for second-generation Italians at roughly similar stages of that group's adjustment to American society. Appendices take up questions such as evidence on the ethnic composition of the mixed second generation (native-born of mixed parentage) as revealed in earlier CPS data sets.