Confused Curly, mulato means mule (as in product of a horse (European) and donkey (African)) and it is quite an offensive term.
Nope, most Brasilians do not ourselves to be of Hispanic origin because that would mean Brasil was colonized by the Spanish. I am not quite sure what Spanish-Brasilians consider themselves since the Brasilian Census forms identify you by race and not ethnicity.
I am not sure if Latino was used to include the Europeans (German, Polish, Italian, etc.) population. I thought it was used to incorporate all people born in Latin America just as American incorporates all people born in the United States. But, Hispanic specifically separates the Spanish speakers from those who speak other languages. According to the BOC term, Hispanic includes Spain and any other country that speaks Spanish. Obviously, it is not looking at a race.
My mother is Brasilian. I was born and raised in the United States but went to college and spent summers in Brasil.
I do not check Latino or Hispanic on any form and neither does anyone else in my family. My mom does not consider herself Hispanic or Latina although she does not deny that she speaks a Latin language and grew up in a African influenced Latin culture.
She does not consider any Brasilian to be Latino as defined in the United States because by the Census definition says anyone with the origin from “Spanish-speaking countries.” Since, the definition did not include all people born in Latin America she assumed they did not mean anyone from the Portuguese or French speaking countries of Latin America.
Before the 2000 Census we (except my father) checked "other" for race and after the 2000 Census we checked "all that applied."
I never tell people that I am Latina but I do tell people, if asked, that I am part Brasilian. Many Brasilians that I have met also say that they are Brasilian and not Latina because of Brasilian pride. They do not want to be lumped together with the Spanish Speakers because so many people do not even know that the native language of Brasil speaks Portuguese.
Guano: I met a Puerto Rican
lady who thought that Portuguese was a dialect of Spanish. I had to explain to her that it is a separate language just like Romanian and Italian are separate languages and not dialects of Spanish.
I met a Salvadoran guy who said that I was speaking bad Spanish (he was serious)
. I was mad and told him that if he could speak Spanish correctly
he would see that Spanish and Portuguese were separate languages. (Yeah, I know the joke that Portuguese is bad Spanish
. We just say that Spanish is horrible Portuguese
I was in Brasil and a Californian couple were sitting in a cafe and the guy said that he did not speak Portuguese and the girl with him said that it is okay because Brasilians understand Spanish (some do and some do not) and it is all the same.
So I told her that yeah if I went to Japan they would understand Chinese because it was all the same (she was of Japanese descent).
Fortunately, these people are the minority (I hope).
I guess most Brasilians in the US do not want to be considered Latina because of the connotation that Latina=Spanish speaking and although there are some cultural similarities there are many differences and we are proud of out uniqueness and do not want to be lumped together. Sort of (not exactly) like Canadians do not want to be lumped together with the United States culture or Quebecois (sp) who want to keep a separate identity from the rest of Canada.
Another Guano: Are people form Equatorial Guinea (formerly Spanish Guinea) considered Hispanic/Latino to other of you Hispanics and Latinos out there?