Masters Thesis

The Experience of Voluntary Singlehood for Mexican American Women

This study explores the experiences of single Mexican American women who have chosen to remain single. I explore the question: How do Mexican American women understand singlehood and how has their experience of taking on a nonnormative gender role impacted their lives? The intent of this study is to explore longterm voluntary singlehood among Mexican American women who have chosen to go against, not only societal expectations, but also their cultural and familial norms and values. Exploring single Mexican American women’s experiences offers insight on how women often successfully go against cultural norms to create new norms that change our generational traditions. I conducted ten in-depth interviews with Mexican American, heterosexual-identified women who claimed a connection to Mexican culture. My sample of women, were between the ages of 35 years to 50 years of age and were currently not in a committed relationship, nor looking for one. The findings from this research underline the importance of achieving a transformative identity that challenges dominant gender roles. It allows transformative women’s identities to reveal themselves and to constitute a new structure of gender relations.

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