Mexican-Origin Newsmakers: Utilizing Health in La Opinión Microfilm for Data Collecting and Methodology

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Spanish-language newspaper La Opinión, in microfilm format from the 1960s, shows how the margins of archival repositories are filled with the voices of marginalized communities. Archival data about the Mexican-origin population has proven scarce throughout the twentieth century; not until 1980 was the term “Hispanic” added to the census and the group categorized in governmental repositories. This paper takes the reader on a journey through the depths of the Los Angeles County Library, into the fourth-floor basement where the entirety of La Opinión is stowed away in reels. This paper covers the challenges and rewards of archival research as well as the process of conducting archival research. Equipped with lived experiences in Mexican enclaves in Los Angeles, the researcher recognizes the voice of the community in ads, announcements, political cartoons, and throughout the margins of the newspaper. This article also offers an analysis of the opinions from the community about health care and raises questions of whether health-care services sufficiently met the needs of the community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-350
Number of pages17
JournalLatino Studies
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2022


  • Data collection
  • Mexican Americans
  • Mexican origin
  • Microfilm
  • Primary sources
  • Spanish-language newspaper

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science


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