Spanish term to denote a person with European and Indigenous American ancestry

A mestizo or mestiza is a person of combined European and Indigenous American descent.


  • That focal point or fulcrum, that juncture where the mestiza stands, is where phenomena tend to collide. It is where the possibility of uniting all that is separate occurs. This assembly is not one where severed or separated pieces merely come together. Nor is it a balancing of opposing powers. In attempting to work out a synthesis, the self has added a third element which is greater than the sum of its severed parts. That third element is a new consciousness—a mestiza consciousness.
  • Soy un amasamiento, I am an act of kneading, of uniting and joining that not only has produced both a creature of darkness and a creature of light, but also a creature that questions the definitions of light and dark and gives them new meanings.
    • Gloria Anzaldúa, "La conciencia de la mestiza," in Borderlands/La Frontera (1987), p. 103
  • Many young Raza activists today are adopting a vision that embraces the strengths of nationalism while shunning its divisiveness. They call it "native spirituality," or "the natural way," or "indigenismo," and see it as that revolutionary worldview we urgently need...indigenismo can subvert the colonized mentality found among mestizo peoples that elevates the European and denigrates the Indian.
    • Elizabeth Martinez "Remember Something Ancient, Imagine Something New” in De Colores Means All of Us: Latina Views for a Multi-Colored Century
  • For many years I have said, following the tradition of Nicolás Guillén, Fernando Ortiz and Alejo Carpentier, that whoever wants to understand Cuba cannot ignore its mestizo condition in which the Hispanic and African components cannot be divided because they have created a cosmovisión that is authentically original.
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