Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Number of Pages



Mexicans were present in southern Nevada since 1829 but their history is not well documented. Often their cultural identity was misrepresented in several Nevada histories. This thesis establishes a written and photographic documentation of the Mexican identity population in southern Nevada between 1829 and 1960; A four-fold typology that expands the definition of ethnicity to include the nature of interethnic relations between two or more ethnic groups is applied to identify the relationships experienced between those of Mexican identity and Euro-Americans. This model, known as the four types of ethnicity, describes interactive behavior as being complementary, competitive, confrontational, or colonial with each defined each in terms of power, exploitation of environment, and ingroup/outgroup ascriptions. Rural Mexicans experienced colonial ethnicity (as the subordinate group) more consistently and for a longer period of time--through 1960 and beyond--than their urban counterparts, who achieved a competitive ethnicity (an equitable relationship) by the 1950s.


Clark County; Ethnohistory; Identity; Mexican; Nevada; Visual

Controlled Subject

Ethnology; Ethnology--Study and teaching

File Format


File Size

8.72 MB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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