Miami has long captured the world's attention in provocative ways. During the 1980s, a series of violent racial disturbances focused national and international attention there as analysts and observers scrambled to explain the demise of the "Magic City." What has emerged is a popular image of Miami as an urban area in which three distinct ethnic groups- Hispanics, Blacks, and Anglos- are pitted against one another in a battle for limited political, economic, and social resources.

Sheila L. Croucher uses Miami as a laboratory in which to explore the social and political construction of ethnic identities and ethnic group conflict. Incorporating interviews with community leaders, politicians, journalists, and business people, as well as periodical and popular literature on Miami, this book examines how social constructs emerge and become accepted, as well as how these definitions reflect the pull of vested interests locally, nationally, and even internationally.

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