Ana Raquel Minian, Undocumented Lives. The Untold Story of Mexican Migration

Undocumented Lives

The Untold Story of Mexican Migration

Ana Raquel Minian

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$29.95 • £21.95 • €27.00

ISBN 9780674737037

Publication: March 2018

* Academic Trade

336 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

6 halftones, 5 maps, 3 graphs, 3 tables

World

About this Book

In the 1970s the Mexican government acted to alleviate rural unemployment by supporting the migration of able-bodied men. Millions crossed into the United States to find work that would help them survive as well as sustain their families in Mexico. They took low-level positions that few Americans wanted and sent money back to communities that depended on their support. But as U.S. authorities pursued more aggressive anti-immigrant measures, migrants found themselves caught between the economic interests of competing governments. The fruits of their labor were needed in both places, and yet neither country made them feel welcome.

Ana Raquel Minian explores this unique chapter in the history of Mexican migration. Undocumented Lives draws on private letters, songs, and oral testimony to recreate the experience of circular migration, which reshaped communities in the United States and Mexico. While migrants could earn for themselves and their families in the U.S., they needed to return to Mexico to reconnect with their homes periodically. Despite crossing the border many times, they managed to belong to communities on both sides of it. Ironically, the U.S. immigration crackdown of the mid-1980s disrupted these flows, forcing many migrants to remain north of the border permanently for fear of not being able to return to work. For them, the United States became known as the jaula de oro—the cage of gold.

Undocumented Lives tells the story of Mexicans who have been used and abused by the broader economic and political policies of Mexico and the United States.

About the Authors

Ana Raquel Minian is Assistant Professor of History and of Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity at Stanford University.

Reviews

Undocumented Lives explores the double exclusion of Mexican men from their respective homes of national belonging—Mexico, by making it impossible for families to subsist without husbands’ and fathers’ migration and remittance; the United States, by exploiting undocumented laborers while forcing them to live in the shadows lest they be deported. This is a deeply humane book that focuses on the lives of migrants who endure and navigate these exclusions.”—Mae Ngai, Columbia University

“A truly impressive accomplishment that combines political and economic analysis with personal narratives of love, loss, and belonging to offer a holistic, deeply humane look at Mexican migration in the late twentieth century. If you read only one book about the roots of immigration debates today, this should be it.”—Geraldo Cadava, author of Standing on Common Ground

“Well-written and gripping, this book rigorously and imaginatively shows us how changes in immigration policy on both sides of the border dramatically affect peoples’ lives. Based on an impressive number of oral histories conducted in both Mexico and the United States, Undocumented Lives is a valuable contribution to the history of both countries and a revelation of the experience of those who can claim neither as home.”—Margaret Chowning, University of California, Berkeley

“An important book that will have an immediate impact on the history and historiography of Mexican migration to the United States in the twentieth century and beyond.”—David G. Gutiérrez, University of California, San Diego

Table of Contents

  • Introduction: From Neither Here nor There
  • 1. An Excess of Citizens
  • 2. “A Population without a Country”
  • 3. The Intimate World of Migrants
  • 4. Normalizing Migration
  • 5. Supporting the Hometown from Abroad
  • 6. The Rights of the People
  • 7. A Law to Curtail Undocumented Migration
  • 8. The Cage of Gold
  • Afterword
  • Appendix A: Note on Sources
  • Appendix B: Queer Migration
  • Notes
  • Acknowledgments

RELATED LINKS

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Flores, Backroads Pragmatists: Mexico’s Melting Pot and Civil Rights in the United States

Backroads PragmatistsNOW IN PAPERBACK
Backroads Pragmatists: Mexico’s Melting Pot and Civil Rights in the United States
Ruben Flores

http://www.upenn.edu/pennpress/book/15223.html

“Elegantly crafted. . . . Backroads Pragmatists is an outstanding work that has broad application and relevance well beyond its Mexican-U.S. context to scholars of studies of social reform, struggles over national membership, and political formation the world round as well as of borderlands and transnational history. . . . A welcome contribution.”—Hispanic American Historical Review

Backroads Pragmatists is the first examination of the influence of Mexican social reform on the United States. Flores illustrates how postrevolutionary Mexico’s experiments in government and education shaped American race relations from the New Deal through the destruction of Jim Crow.

Full Description, Table of Contents, and More

360 pages | 6 x 9 | 26 illus.

Hardcover | ISBN 978-0-8122-4620-9 | $55.00s | £42.00
Paperback | ISBN 978-0-8122-2414-6 | $24.95s | £18.99
Ebook | ISBN 978-0-8122-0989-1 | $24.95s | £16.50
A volume in the Politics and Culture in Modern America series

View table of contents

Winner of the 2015 Society for U.S. Intellectual History Book Award

“Elegantly crafted. . . . Backroads Pragmatists is an outstanding work that has broad application and relevance well beyond its Mexican-U.S. context to scholars of studies of social reform, struggles over national membership, and political formation the world round as well as of borderlands and transnational history. . . . A welcome contribution.”—Hispanic American Historical Review

“A tremendously ambitious book, Backroads Pragmatists is uncommonly original and broad in conceptualization and research. The emphasis on ideas and their transnational circulation makes this the most important work on Mexican American civil rights struggles in the last decade.”—Benjamin Johnson, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

“A powerful reminder that the one-way intellectual relationship North Americans often assumed for U.S.-Latin American intellectual relations was simply not the case. The influence of Mexican social reform in the United States promises to be of great interest to scholars in any number of fields, including U.S. and Mexican history as well as borderlands and transnational history.”—Alexander Dawson, Simon Fraser University

Like the United States, Mexico is a country of profound cultural differences. In the aftermath of the Mexican Revolution (1910-20), these differences became the subject of intense government attention as the Republic of Mexico developed ambitious social and educational policies designed to integrate its multitude of ethnic cultures into a national community of democratic citizens. To the north, Americans were beginning to confront their own legacy of racial injustice, embarking on the path that, three decades later, led to the destruction of Jim Crow. Backroads Pragmatists is the first book to show the transnational cross-fertilization between these two movements.

In molding Mexico’s ambitious social experiment, postrevolutionary reformers adopted pragmatism from John Dewey and cultural relativism from Franz Boas, which, in turn, profoundly shaped some of the critical intellectual figures in the Mexican American civil rights movement. The Americans Ruben Flores follows studied Mexico’s integration theories and applied them to America’s own problem, holding Mexico up as a model of cultural fusion. These American reformers made the American West their laboratory in endeavors that included educator George I. Sanchez’s attempts to transform New Mexico’s government agencies, the rural education campaigns that psychologist Loyd Tireman adapted from the Mexican ministry of education, and anthropologist Ralph L. Beals’s use of applied Mexican anthropology in the U.S. federal courts to transform segregation policy in southern California.

Through deep archival research and ambitious synthesis, Backroads Pragmatistsilluminates how nation-building in postrevolutionary Mexico unmistakably influenced the civil rights movement and democratic politics in the United States.

Published in cooperation with the William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies at Southern Methodist University.

Ruben Flores is Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of Kansas.

Order Backroads Pragmatists and save 30%.

Paul D. Naish, Slavery and Silence: Latin America and the U.S. Slave Debate

Paul D. Naish, Slavery and Silence: Latin America and the U.S. Slave Debate, Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2017.

In the thirty-five years before the Civil War, it became increasingly difficult for Americans outside the world of politics to have frank and open discussions about the institution of slavery, as divisive sectionalism and heated ideological rhetoric circumscribed public debate. To talk about slavery was to explore—or deny—its obvious shortcomings, its inhumanity, its contradictions. To celebrate it required explaining away the nation’s proclaimed belief in equality and its public promise of rights for all, while to condemn it was to insult people who might be related by ties of blood, friendship, or business, and perhaps even to threaten the very economy and political stability of the nation.

For this reason, Paul D. Naish argues, Americans displaced their most provocative criticisms and darkest fears about the institution onto Latin America. Naish bolsters this seemingly counterintuitive argument with a compelling focus on realms of public expression that have drawn sparse attention in previous scholarship on this era. In novels, diaries, correspondence, and scientific writings, he contends, the heat and bluster of the political arena was muted, and discussions of slavery staged in these venues often turned their attention south of the Rio Grande.

At once familiar and foreign, Cuba, Brazil, Haiti, and the independent republics of Spanish America provided rhetorical landscapes about which everyday citizens could speak, through both outright comparisons or implicit metaphors, what might otherwise be unsayable when talking about slavery at home. At a time of ominous sectional fracture, Americans of many persuasions—Northerners and Southerners, Whigs and Democrats, scholars secure in their libraries and settlers vulnerable on the Mexican frontier—found unity in their disparagement of Latin America. This displacement of anxiety helped create a superficial feeling of nationalism as the country careened toward disunity of the most violent, politically charged, and consequential sort.

“Naish is a superb writer, communicating complex ideas with a clear focus, and his engagement with historical texts is thorough and compelling. With all that has been written on issues of race and political identity in the first half of the nineteenth century, he has much to say that is fresh and revealing.”—Andrew Burstein, Louisiana State University

“Paul D. Naish’s sensitive, lively, careful study takes two subjects we might think we know all about—the politics of slavery and U.S. visions of Latin America—and shows their unappreciated relationship. Our understanding of both topics are enhanced without making the fate of slavery or of U.S.-Latin-American relations inevitable. An eloquent, important book from a scholar who will be greatly missed.”—David Waldstreicher, author of Slavery’s Constitution: From Revolution to Ratification

“By exploring how antebellum Americans imagined Latin American slavery, Naish sheds new and interdisciplinary light on how they understood slavery at home. Eloquent, surprising, and haunting, this book shows that Americans frequently turned their attention south of the border to air anxieties about human bondage, ones that seemed otherwise too dangerous to discuss.”—Caitlin Fitz, Northwestern University

Paul D. Naish (1960-2016) taught reading and writing, social science, and liberal arts courses at Guttman Community College of the City University of New York.

http://www.upenn.edu/pennpress/book/15718.html

Catherine Vézina, Diplomacia migratoria: una historia transnacional del Programa Bracero, 1947-1952.

Catherine Vézina, Diplomacia migratoria: una historia transnacional del Programa Bracero, 1947-1952. México: Acervo Histórico Diplomático y CIDE, 2017.

El libro presenta un análisis de la política bilateral que reguló la migración mexicana laboral, especialmente en la época de la renegociación del Programa Bracero, entre 1947 y 1952. El estudio de las discusiones diplomáticas que propiciaron el mantenimiento del programa después de la Segunda Guerra Mundial se llevó a cabo en diversas escalas y de manera transnacional, considerando los contextos político, económico y social de México y Estados Unidos durante la posguerra.

Al examinar las realidades de dos entidades directamente afectadas por el plan, se buscó ilustrar la manera en que el Programa Bracero contribuyó a la consolidación de la inmigración mexicana legal y de la corriente ilegal que la acompañó. Uno de estos estados, Guanajuato, figuró entre los principales productores de migrantes durante la época y cuya relación política y económica fue tensa con el gobierno del presidente Miguel Alemán (1946-1952). California, el principal consumidor de esta inmigración temporal legal, es el otro estado en el que observamos la dinámica de los intereses involucrados en el pacto laboral. Esta imbricación entre los distintos niveles de análisis es crucial para comprender el proceso de elaboración, negociación y aplicación del Programa Bracero, una de las experiencias migratorias más significativas entre estos dos países y que no se ha visto desde entonces.

Correo electrónico:
dgahistorico @ sre.gob.mx



https://acervo.sre.gob.mx/index.php/acervo/35-acervo-historico-diplomatico/252

Minian, Ana Raquel. “De Terruño a Terruño: Reimagining Belonging through the Creation of Hometown Associations.”

Minian, Ana Raquel. “De Terruño a Terruño: Reimagining Belonging through the Creation of Hometown Associations.” Journal of American History 104 (1), June 2017, 120-142.

May, Robert E. “The Irony of Confederate Diplomacy: Visions of Empire, the Monroe Doctrine, and the Quest for Nationhood.”

May, Robert E. “The Irony of Confederate Diplomacy: Visions of Empire, the Monroe Doctrine, and the Quest for Nationhood.” Journal of Southern History 58 (1), February 2017, 69-106.