Dr. Agius Vallejo's book is a spectacular addition to academic inquiry and explores a topic long overlooked. "Barrios to Burbs: The Making of the Mexican American Middle Class" is about the pathways to middle class for Mexican Americans, and illuminates the nuances of an often prejudged minority. A book such as this (based upon statistical facts) is vital to society in bringing understanding to a misinformed citizenry, especially during a time when disinformation, intolerance, and animosity for people who are different runs rampant.
The author reveals her research methods with meticulous detail, then defines what it means to be part of the middle class, and provides a historic chronology of Mexicans and how our past as Americans is inextricably intertwined with this population. Through her research, Agius Vallejo cogently reveals there to be multiple pathways to the middle class (as opposed to previous theory which posits a more singular linear path). She also explores the internal and external hindrances to progress, which many Mexican Americans face in their quest for prosperity, such as familial obligations to help one another financially, and the social-political-institutional discriminations that come along with not being Caucasian in America. Highly recommended!