Theses and Dissertations - UTB/UTPA

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Sonia Hernandez

Second Advisor

Dr. Amy Hay

Third Advisor

Dr. Michael Faubion


This theses highlights ethnic Mexican women from Texas who contributed to World War II through the military, wartime employment industries, and home front unconventional efforts. By utilizing twenty-eight oral histories, collected from the VOCES Oral History Project Archive at the Benson Latin American Collection, ten Texas newspapers, and military documents, this research presents the wartime efforts of ethnic Mexican women. Each chapter traces the women’s economic, racial, and gendered struggles in their private and social spaces before the war to better appreciate their participation during the war. An examination of the experiences of ethnic Mexican women during World War II analyzes the agency they enacted to accept, resist, and negotiate their positions within a patriarchal structure in their social and private spaces. World War II provided a moment for ethnic Mexican women to break from strict gender roles, challenge racial barriers, and gain economic autonomy.


Copyright 2014 Laura L. Oviedo. All Rights Reserved.

Granting Institution

University of Texas-Pan American