Public Discourse versus Public Policy: Latinas/os, Affirmative Action, and the Court of Public Opinion

María C. Ledesma


The purpose of this article is to highlight the power of popular discourse in shaping public policy debates concerning educational access and opportunity for historically marginalized and minoritized students, especially for Latinas/os. I argue that proponents of race-conscious policies would do well to challenge the elimination of affirmative action by employing a more critical approach to discourse consumption, one which interrogates, historicizes, and contextualizes the often truncated and/or deceptive narratives relied upon by critics of affirmative action, to call for the end of all race-conscious social policy.

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