My Book

Latinos at the Golden Gate: Creating Community and Identity in San Francisco (Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina Press, 2013).


My new (and first) book is on the history of Latinos in San Francisco. Latinos at the Golden Gate was a labor of love to research and write. It represents the end of a long road for me, professionally speaking, and I am very excited to be able to share it with you. You can order it directly from the publisher, from Amazon, or find it at a bookstore near you!


Born in an explosive boom and built through distinct economic networks, San Francisco has a cosmopolitan character that often masks the challenges migrants faced to create community in the city by the bay. Latin American migrants have been part of the city’s story since its beginning. Charting the development of a hybrid Latino identity forged through struggle–latinidad–from the Gold Rush through the civil rights era, Tomás F. Summers Sandoval Jr. chronicles the rise of San Francisco’s diverse community of Latin American migrants.

This latinidad, Summers Sandoval shows, was formed and made visible on college campuses and in churches, neighborhoods, movements for change, youth groups, protests, the Spanish-language press, and business districts. Using diverse archival sources, Summers Sandoval gives readers a panoramic perspective on the transformation of a multinational, multigenerational population into a visible, cohesive, and diverse community that today is a major force for social and political activism and cultural production in California and beyond.

“Tomás Summers Sandoval brings much needed attention to the social history and lived experiences of Latinos in the region and draws special attention to the histories of political activism and political resistance that have been critical to San Francisco’s development. His new book fills one of the largest holes in Latino historiography and helps readers of all stripes to better understand the centrality of Latinos in the making of the city.”
Stephen J. Pitti, Yale University

“Tomás Summers Sandoval offers a fresh and much-needed interpretation of Latina/o community and identity formation in the United States. This major work fills a tremendous void in scholarship.”
Matt Garcia, Arizona State University


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