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The Maid’s Daughter: Living Inside and Outside the American Dream

The Maid's Daughter, by Mary Romero.
The Maid's Daughter, by Mary Romero.
Courtesy of NYU Press

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Meet Olivia. She was born in Los Angeles and taken to Mexico to live with extended family. At the age of three, Olivia was brought back to Los Angeles to live with her mother, who slept in a room just off the kitchen as a live-in maid for a wealthy family. Raised alongside the children of the wealthy family, Olivia goes to school with them, eats meals with them, and is taken shopping for clothes with them. One minute she feels like she’s living within the American dream—and the next, like she’s living outside of it. Told largely from Olivia’s voice, Olivia struggles to define her identities of race, class, and gender in a story that is all too familiar—yet often untold—in the United States.


Mary Romero, author of The Maid’s Daughter