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Introduction: Border Studies, Diaspora, and Theories of Globalization

  • Claudia Sadowski-Smith

Abstract

Within the last few decades, U.S. borders have undergone tremendous change. Border regions have witnessed growing immigration and the relocation of industries under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). NAFTA, one of the primary political instruments of globalization in the Americas, has, since its implementation in 1994, eradicated trade tariffs between Mexico, the United States, and Canada and thus rendered North American borders more porous to the free flow of goods and capital. But the agreement makes virtually no provisions for the free passage of people and has not prevented the further reinforcement of the U.S.-Mexico border. Here, since the 1990s, corrugated steel walls have begun to replace chain-link fences at the most popular crossing points. Giving primacy to unfettered movements of goods and investment capital, NAFTA has thus been working to create a common North American territory where goods and services can move more freely but where borders continue to intrude on the everyday lives of various groups of people.

Keywords

Free Trade Border Area North American Free Trade Agreement Transnational Corporation Undocumented Immigration 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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© Claudia Sadowski-Smith 2002

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  • Claudia Sadowski-Smith

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