Job Market Paper

The Effect of Racial and Ethnic Attitudes on Hispanic Identity in the U.S

In this paper, I study the determinants of the choice to identify as Hispanic among those who could---those whose parents, grandparents, or selves were born in a Spanish-speaking country. I find that individuals with Hispanic ancestry are significantly less likely to self-identify as Hispanic if they live in states with high levels of implicit ethnic bias. A one standard deviation increase in bias decreases self-reported Hispanic identity by seven and 13 percentage points for first and second-generation Hispanics, respectively. These effects are more prominent among second-generation immigrants whose mothers and fathers were born in a Spanish-speaking country than among children of inter-ethnic parents.