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Document Details


Title: Lara, Severita
Document type: Oral history
Accessibility: Free Only
Repository: University of Texas, Arlington. Central Library. Special Collections Department
Collection: Tejano Voices: University of Texas at Arlington Center for Mexican American Studies Oral History Project
Description: Ms. Lara discusses her family history and genealogy. She describes race discrimination she experienced as a Mexican American student and she talks about her first encounters with political protests while she was in high school. Ms. Lara elaborates upon how she became a leader in Mexican American student protests with the culmination in the Crystal City student walkouts. She lauds her mentor, José Angel Gutiérrez, and discusses how he influenced her to get involved in making social and political changes for the Mexican American community in Crystal City. She talks about the importance of education and relates that she earned a B.S. in biology in spite of not finishing high school. Ms. Lara tells about the problems that lack of campaign finance money created for her in pursuing political office, and she describes how trying to stay active in politics resulted in economic reprisals against her family by members of the political establishment. She gives details about her election to the Crystal City Council and her one-year appointment as mayor. She also describes her accomplishments during her year as mayor and gives reasons why she did not seek election to a full mayoral term. Ms. Lara explains the challenges she faced from the parents of her students who blamed La Raza Unida Party and José Angel Gutiérrez for the down turn in the local economy. Ms. Lara concludes the interview by elaborating about the politics involved when she lost her bid for a county judge seat.
Extent: 82 pages
URL: http://libraries.uta.edu/tejanovoices/transcripts/TV_013.html
Original Language: English
Audio: [Audio available]
Time span: Not indicated ... to 1996 (Year of interview)
Speaker: Lara, Severita, 1952-
Speaker gender: Female
Speaker date of birth: 6-Feb-1952
Age at speaking: 44
Document location: Crystal City, TX
Document date: 22-Jul-1996
Interviewer: Gutierrez, Jose Angel
Organizations discussed: La Raza Unida Party, Crystal City, TX
Locations discussed: Crystal City, TX; North America; Texas; United States
Topics discussed - ASP terms: Biology; City council members--Texas; Community; Crystal City, TX; Degrees, Academic; Education; Education, Higher; Hispanic American leadership--Texas; Hispanic American women; Hispanic Americans--Texas; La Raza Unida Party, Crystal City, TX; Mayors--United States; North America; Oral history; Political campaigns--Texas; Racism; Student movements; Texas; United States
ASP release: 2005-06
Document code: OHI0000213-158