Author Archives: Tina Lam


The primary sources reveal the living and working experiences of some Braceros. Just as Ngai mentioned, Braceros were treated and paid poorly by their bosses in the United States. The primary sources of the personal experiences of some Braceros, therefore, add to the depth of Ngai’s work. 

To begin, Braceros “provided the human labor power for the Southwest’s agricultural revolution” (Ngai, 129). From Mr. Juan Loza’s experience, he was an agricultural worker in both Texas and California and was “working with beets, thinning, with asparagus, with celery, and afterwards picking onions, picking tomatoes” every day without rest (“Juan Loza”). Also, Nadel’s photo of Braceros picking lettuce is an example of the agricultural work that Braceros did in the past. 

Furthermore, Braceros were treated badly by many Euro-Americans because they were perceived as “foreigners even though the majority of the Anglos themselves had also migrated to the Southwest during the same period.” (Ngai, 132). This was supported by Loza’s experience of trying to buy a coffee in a restaurant. His order was rejected by the cashier and he was kicked three times in the behind by a white American.” (“Juan Loza”). 

Research annotations

Medland, William J. 1990. “The Cuban Missile Crisis: Evolving Historical Perspectives.” The History Teacher 23 (4): 433-47.

Medland, Professor of American History at Saint Mary’s College of Minnesota, reviews three works on the Cuban Missile Crisis in his article. The article includes mainly four aspects related to the crisis, including the 1) the basis for Soviet emplacement of missiles in Cuba, 2) the response of the United States to the missiles in Cuba, 3) the leadership of President John F. Kennedy during the crisis, and 4) the consequences or results in the aftermath of the nuclear confrontation. The article sheds light on my research question by providing background information on the development of the crisis and the difficulties Cuba, the Soviet Union, and the United States faced when they were dealing with the brink of nuclear disaster.


Sanghro, Rafi R., Jalil A. Chandio, Siraj A. Soomro, and Javed A. Mahar. 2018. “How Did the Tripartite Relationship Among the United States, the Soviet Union and Cuba Lead to the Cuban Missile Crisis and Complicate Efforts to Resolve the Crisis?” Journal of History Culture and Art Research 7 (3): 199-207.      

This article is completed by two Assistant Professors and two P.h.D students from different colleges. It reveals the political leadership roles of Cuba, the United States, and the Soviet Union played to avoid the nuclear disaster. It focuses on the motives of the three countries’ involvement in the Cuban Missle Crisis based on their political situation at that time. Apart from the authors’ arguments, pictures and maps showing the geographical aspect of the crisis are also included in the article. The article sheds light on my research question by providing the interests and objectives of the three main countries involved in the crisis. 


I picked the page “Argentina-United States relations” on Wikipedia. This page describes the relationship between the United States and Argentina over time. This is related to our course theme of Latin American history and Latin American-U.S. relations. The lack of enough information and outdated statistics make this page look biased toward the U.S. While this page provides information on a variety of aspects like trade and embassy functions, it does not include too much information related to the U.S.-Argentina relations before Argentina’s independence. Also, it is clear that many statistics listed in the trade and public opinion sections have not been updated since 2011 and 2012. Beyond that, the lemon dispute as one of the most important bilateral issues between the U.S. and Argentina is not fully summarized on the page and is outdated since 2012. Even the page specifically for the lemon dispute is outdated as well. 

The information is pretty U.S.-centric as it excludes most of the Spanish-written sources. I might suggest the editors add in more Spanish historical sources before the independence of Argentina to give the readers a better sense of the historical relationship between the U.S. and Argentina. Also, it would be great if the page can be updated with more recent issues and the resolution to past issues such as the lemon dispute. It is misleading that only the photos are updated but not the text. Making these changes would make the page more reliable and comprehensive.


I would like to investigate the political relationship between Cuba and the United States. This topic is useful for understanding Latin American history because it is a significant example of U.S. intervention in Latin America. Just like other Latin American countries like Venezuela and Mexico, U.S.-Cuban relations have been intertwined for a long time. From the U.S. “helping” Cuba to gain its independence from Spain to the U.S.economic embargo against Cuba, these were all important moments that have affected how other Latin American countries view U.S. interventionism. While the U.S. has intervened in most Latin American countries’ politics historically, Cuba has remained its resistance against U.S. intervention and democracy. Being the only communist country in Latin America has further made Cuba a powerful ideological symbol for many Latin Americans. Cuba’s distinct revolutionary leaders like Castro and Guevara have also contributed to a big part of Latinx history, and have inspired many activists in Latin America as well as the world. Thus, understanding the U.S.-Cuban political relationship would allow us to gain an insight into the historical development of U.S.-Latin American relations.

Research Annotations

McCook, Stuart. “The World Was My Garden: Tropical Botany and Cosmopolitanism in American Science, 1898-1935.” 499-507.

McCook, a history professor who focuses on the environmental history of tropical crops and commodities, examines the process of how American botanical and agricultural research became cosmopolitan from the 19th to 20th century. McCook argues that the expansion of tropical botany and agricultural research roots from the U.S. government’s desire to controlling the newly colonized lands. While the governmental funding of research is not always abundant, the government’s efforts have indirectly created a global network for researchers. Many successful researchers mentioned by McCook build up their own companies or research organizations and promote their research focus. This work is useful for my study of the development of the U.S. tropical botany and agricultural research because it provides me with some clear background information and important organizations related to the research development. 


Navarro-Rivera, Pablo. “The Imperial Enterprise and Educational Policies in Colonial Puerto Rico.” 163-174. 

Associate Professor Navarro-Rivera examines how education is used by the United States’ government as a way to assimilate/americanize Puerto Ricans, whose lands are colonized by the U.S. He argues that teacher training programs and schools that favor American curriculum and English-learning are tactics that the U.S. government used to conquer Puerto Ricans’ cultural identities for better governance. He specifically mentions the Carlisle Indian Industrial School so as to present a better picture of how Puerto Ricans children are being treated and educated in U.S. vocational schools. This work is useful for my study of the U.S. expansionist policy because it contains both photos and quotes from Puerto Rican children who were sent to a U.S. vocational school. This would provide me with insights into the struggles and development of children under U.S. expansionism. 

An analysis of “Women Can and Do Fight”

The New England Woman Suffrage Association’s 1898 annual meeting record provides justification for American women’s suffrage rights in the 19th century. The record was written under the circumstance in which the United States was prepared to fight against Spain in Cuba. Given that women lacked the right to vote at that time, many wanted to prove their right to full citizenship by backing the U.S. in the war with Spain. Simultaneously, American suffragists were trying to challenge the idea that military services should preclude voting rights. From the association’s resolution at their annual meeting, it is easy to see some points that the New England suffragists raised which were contradictory with their yearning for equality. 

To begin, the suffragists were looking down on Cuban women despite their recognition that all people have the right to self-government. They explicitly claimed that “American women are better qualified for self-government by education than most of the Cubans” (66). This quote hinted that social Darwinism was still popular in the U.S. at the time. Many believed that the Anglo-Saxon race was superior to other races and held the stereotype that Cubans were less qualified for voting rights. 

Yet, the word “sisters” appeared later in the record (66). It showed that these American suffragists were situating themselves in unity with Cuban women. On top of that, Cuban women were praised for their efforts of fighting against the Spanish, and even used as an example to show that women can fight like men to strengthen the demand for voting rights for American women (66). They explicitly said that “in extreme circumstances, women can and do fight” (66). This appears contradictory to the inferior image of the Cuban women mentioned above, but American imperialism is behind this resolution. While the U.S.suffragists believed that they were more capable and civilized, they were not hesitant to use Cubans’ work to justify their own fight for voting equality. 


I read the article “Latin America-United States Relations” on Wikipedia. Instead of presenting both the U.S. and Latin American perspectives, the article focuses on the actions and plans of the U.S. toward Latin America. This is supported by the fact that the U.S. is often used as the subject in the content, as well as the larger proportion on U.S. foreign policies.

Apart from its perspective, the fact included in the article is not always referenced with reliable sources. A good example of this is the “19th Century to World War I” section. While there are hyperlinks to specific people and issues, the description of the treaties and processes are not cited. Despite most of the sections in the article are related to Latin America-United States Relations, some of them like “Academic Research” are not directly related.

In terms of the neutrality of the article, I think it is okay in general. But some of the content might seem to be biased. For example, the article mentions that most of the 10 million illegal immigrants are of Hispanic origins and these immigrants would send money back home. Not only are the statistics not cited, but the remarks of immigrants sending money is also pretty biased.

When it comes to the sources, most of them are working well. But some of them are only linking to the author’s Wikipedia page but not the book. Some of the sentences also seemed to be closely paraphrased. For example, the sentence “Latin America is the largest foreign supplier of oil to the United States and its fastest-growing trading partner, as well as the largest source of drugs.” is similar to the sentence “It is the United States’ fastest-growing trading partner, as well as its biggest supplier of illegal drugs” from the original source. On top of that, the sources used are not really updated. Some of the books and journal articles cited are from the 90s. In addition, there is no message posted on the talk page of the article. So, it is hard to trace the conversations going on behind the scenes about how to represent this topic. The article is also not in WikiProjects. 

Week 3 blog post

The articles by Rodo and Bolivar clearly reveal Latin America—United States relationship in the periods that they are written. It is no surprise that there are similar tropes used. Both authors show their concerns over the dominant power of the United States. In Rodo’s article, he describes the United States as a powerful country that is trying to conquest Latin America (Rodo, 1900, p.32). Bolivar agrees when he expresses his worries of the U.S. targetting Colombia and “plague America with miseries” (Bolivar, 1829, p.173).

Despite the similarities found in their stances toward an invasion of Latin America from the United States, Bolivar and Rodo hold different opinions on the way to resist U.S. dominance. While acknowledging the efficiency in American utilitarianism, Rodo believes that it is crucial for Latin Americans to respect and protect their unique culture and heritage from “Americanization” (Rodo, 1900, p.33). On the contrary, Bolivar argues that it is easier to protect Latin America, or at least Colombia, when other stronger countries like England and France are supporting its political decision (Bolivar, 1829, p.173). 

“They say, I say” Blog post

In Pike’s article “Wild People in Wild Lands,” he illustrates the negative stereotypes most Americans hold towards Latin Americans in the 19th century. In order to support his argument, Pike includes quotes from diverse parties from political leaders to travelers. He points out that Latin Americans are often categorized as poor and weak barbarians who are addicted to alcohol and sex. Apart from the lack of understanding of Latin Americans’ culture and traditions, he suggests that the stereotypes Americans created are tools to justify the stripping of Lain Americans’ political powers and properties.

In his article “The Anglo-Saxon and the World’s Future,” Strong shows his belief of the Anglo-Saxons in the United States being the best “race” in the world. He draws from works by famous scholars like Darwin and Adam Smith to support his arguments. He argues that civil liberty and pure spiritual Christianity are the qualities behind the superiority of the Anglo-Saxons. He predicts that the Anglo-Saxons will outnumber other races and finally taking over the world in the future.

In my view, both articles reveal the main reason behind stereotyping—ethnocentrism. While Pike points out that it is ignorance and misunderstanding of other races that allow the creation of negative stereotypes of Latin Americans, Strong clearly stands from an ethnocentric point of view in that he only sees the qualities that Anglo-Saxons have as superior. I think these articles raise our awareness of ethnocentricism and its harmful consequences to both ourselves and other races. It is important for us to get rid of our prejudices and be open to other cultures. In this way, we can truly respect one another.

MLK Day of Service

Today, I have joined several Justice Dialogues including “How Did We End Up Here? Navigating East Asian Identity & Privilege” in Lean Lecture Hall and “The Racial Divide in Infant Mortality” in Williams Hall. All of these talks were amazing and meaningful because race is a big issue here in the States. Not only did these talks reveal some of the racial/stereotypical problems, but listening to diverse perspectives also encouraged me to see things in a different lens. I believe we should all understand and respect one another regardless of race, gender, sex, and religion.