April 28, 2022 6:00pm — 7:30pm

Meet the Author: Mike Amezcua in conversation with James Akerman

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Thursday, April 28, 2022 
Program: 6:00 - 7:00 pm
Book Signing 7:00 - 7:30 pm

Held in partnership with the Newberry Library
Newberry Library - Ruggles Hall (In-person event)

Free and open to the public 
Please register for free in advance here.

In Making Mexican Chicago, Mike Amezcua offers a powerful multiracial history of Chicago that sheds new light on the origins and endurance of urban inequality. Amezcua visits the Newberry to discuss how the Windy City became a postwar Latinx metropolis in the face of white resistance.

Though Chicago is often popularly defined by its Polish, Black, and Irish populations, Cook County is home to the third-largest Mexican American population in the United States. The story of Mexican immigration and integration into the city is one of complex political struggles, deeply entwined with issues of housing and neighborhood control.

In the decades after World War II, working-class Chicago neighborhoods like Pilsen and Little Village became sites of upheaval and renewal. Mexican Americans attempted to build new communities in the face of white resistance that cast them as perpetual aliens. Mike Amezcua charts the diverse strategies used by Mexican Chicagoans to fight the forces of segregation, economic predation, and gentrification, focusing on how unlikely combinations of social conservatism and real estate market savvy paved new paths for Latinx assimilation.

For this event, Amezcua will speak with James Akerman, Curator of Maps at the Newberry and the curator of the exhibition Crossings: Mapping American Journeys.

Mike Amezcua, Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Georgetown University, was recently named the co-winner of the Arnold Hirsch Award for Best Article in Urban History by the Urban History Association.

James Akerman is the Newberry’s Curator of Maps and Director of the Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography.

Purchase Making Mexican Chicago online from the Newberry Bookshop.

As the Newberry Library welcomes visitors back to the library, they are continuing to closely monitor health and safety conditions related to COVID-19 in Chicago. Click here for the Newberry's visitor policy.