Latinos and Consumption
Kedge Business School, France
University of Oregon, USA
Latinas (feminine) and Latinos (masculine) make up a diverse diaspora configured at the nexus of Native American peoples, Europeans, Blacks, and Asians. Its geographic coordinates span Latin America, the United States, the Caribbean and Mediterranean regions, and a few Southeast Asian nations, such as the Philippines, as a result of the historical legacy of Spanish and Portuguese colonization, emigration, shared linguistic traditions, values, national policies, and most recently, marketing programs. Like other diasporas, its communities are marked by internal and external social relations, with strong political and economic inflections. A major distinction lies between the nations where Latinas/os constitute a majority and others where Latinas/os are a minority, although identities in both social domains reflect unique configurations of national residence, subcultural affiliation, and community and market aggregation. For example, in the United States, where Latinas/os are the largest minority, strong national roots remain among immigrants and descendants who consider themselves Mexican American, Cuban American, etc.
At the same time, the umbrella terms “Hispanic” and “Latina/o” convene a pan-national, pan-cultural, socio-market formation. In the United States, the “discovery” of a cohesive and identifiable consumer segment called ...