Tony Affigne, Political Science, Providence College
Between 2000 and 2010, the U.S. Hispanic population grew by 43 percent, with growth in every one of the 50 states. Latino-owned businesses as well as a growing workforce of Latino service, industrial, and professional workers, are transforming and revitalizing local economies across the country. In states as diverse as Florida, Colorado, New York, and Georgia, Hispanic voters now comprise more than 10% of the electorate, enough to determine state and federal elections. At the same time a sharp backlash, represented most clearly by the presidential campaign of Donald Trump, defines the Latino emergence as a threat to national unity, political culture, and economic prosperity. In this lecture, award-winning political scientist Tony Affigne explores the meaning and implications of these contradictory trends in American politics and society.