Using the U.S. wall at the border with Mexico as a focal point, two experts examine the global surge of economic and environmental refugees, presenting a new vision of the relationships between citizen and migrant in an era of “Juan Crow,” which systematically creates a perpetual undercaste.
Winner, National Association for Ethnic Studies (NAES) Outstanding Book Award, 2017
As increasing global economic disparities, violence, and climate change provoke a rising tide of forced migration, many countries and local communities are responding by building walls—literal and metaphorical—between citizens and newcomers. Up Against the Wall: Re-imagining the U.S.-Mexico Border examines the temptation to construct such walls through a penetrating analysis of the U.S. wall at the U.S.-Mexico border, as well as investigating the walling out of Mexicans in local communities. Calling into question the building of a wall against a friendly neighboring nation, Up Against the Wall offers an analysis of the differences between borders and boundaries. This analysis opens the way to envisioning alternatives to the stark and policed divisions that are imposed by walls of all kinds. Tracing the consequences of imperialism and colonization as citizens grapple with new migrant neighbors, the book paints compelling examples from key locales affected by the wall—Nogales, Arizona vs. Nogales, Sonora; Tijuana/San Diego; and the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas. An extended case study of Santa Barbara describes the creation of an internal colony in the aftermath of the U.S. conquest of Mexican land, a history that is relevant to many U.S. cities and towns.
Ranging from human rights issues in the wake of massive global migration to the role of national restorative shame in the United States for the treatment of Mexicans since 1848, the authors delve into the broad repercussions of the unjust and often tragic consequences of excluding others through walled structures along with the withholding of citizenship and full societal inclusion. Through the lens of a detailed examination of forced migration from Mexico to the United States, this transdisciplinary text, drawing on philosophy, psychology, and political theory, opens up multiple insights into how nations and communities can coexist with more justice and more compassion.
Edward S. Casey is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at State University of New York, Stony Brook, and the author of several acclaimed books, among them Getting Back into Place and The World at a Glance.
MARY WATKINS is Professor of Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, California, where she also serves as director of Community and Ecopsychological Fieldwork and Research. Her previous books, widely read, include Toward Psychologies of Liberation, coauthored with Helene Shulman, and Invisible Guests: The Development of Imaginal Dialogues.
"Stunning in the insights it unearths. . . . [provides] impressive, timely scholarship in this era of great concern about migrancy and the increased proximity among peoples created by globalization."
~Fred Evans, Professor of Philosophy, Duquesne University
"...a very impressive work of interdisciplinary research and analysis, one that will interest students and scholars of public policy, psychology, contemporary art, and more. Highly recommended."
List of Illustrations
Part 1. Re-viewing La Frontera: Borders versus Boundaries
1. La Frontera as Border and Boundary
2. Ambos Nogales: A Tale of Two Cities
3. Tijuana: The Wall and the Estuary
4. Wall and River in the Lower Rio Grande Valley
Postlude 1. Walled Up and Walled Out
Part 2. Looking Both Ways at the Border
Prelude to Part 2. Friendship Park: First Encounter
5. The Creation of an Internal Colony: Santa Barbara, a City Divided against Itself
6. Juan Crow: The American Ethnoracial Caste System and the Criminalization of Mexican Migrants
7. The Souls of Anglos
8. Border-Wall Art as Limit Acts
9. Creating Communities of Hospitality: Growing Connective Tissue between Immigrants and Citizens
Postlude 2. Gaining Access to the Heart of Our Home
Epilogue: From Standing in the Shadows of Walls to Imagining Them Otherwise
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