Introduction: Toward Social Justice at the U.S.-Mexico Border

  • Kathleen Staudt
  • Irasema Coronado


Many eyes now focus on the U.S.-Mexico Border, once a frontier conceptualized as being at the margins of national political life. The U.S. Southwest, formerly a part of northern Mexico, is a place of much movement: people cross back and forth to shop, visit, and work; goods move under a new trade regime, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), that went into effect on January 1, 1994; pollution and contamination enter air and water with no respect for national boundaries. Movies like the Academy-Award winning Traffic sear the imaginations of both Mexican and U.S. (“American”) nationals with the greed, corruption, and sickness of post-modern societies.


Opportunity Structure North American Free Trade Agree Border State Political Opportunity Structure Nonprofit Board 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Timothy Dunn, The Militarization of the U.S.-Mexico Border, 1978–1992: Low-Intensity Conflict Doctrine Comes Home (Austin: Center for Mexican American Studies, University of Texas, 1996);Google Scholar
  2. selections from David Spener and Kathleen Staudt, eds., The U.S.-Mexico Border. Transcending Divisions, Contesting Identities (Boulder: Lynne Rienner Press, 1998),Google Scholar
  3. esp. the concluding chapter. Irasema Coronado and Edward J. Williams, “The Hardening of the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands: Causes and Consequences,” Boundary Security Bulletin vol. 1, no. 4. University of Durham, England, 1994.Google Scholar
  4. 2.
    David Spener and Bryan Roberts, “Small Business, Social Capital, and Economic Integration on the Texas-Mexico Border,” in Spener and Staudt, 1998, pp. 83–104; Kathleen Staudt, Free Trade? Informal Economies at the U.S.-Mexico Border (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1998).Google Scholar
  5. 3.
    On numbers for displaced laborers, see Kathleen Staudt and Randy Capps, “Con La Ayuda de Dios? El Pasoans Manage the 1996 Welfare and Immigration Law Reforms,” forthcoming in Living in the Interim: Immigrant Communities and Welfare “Reform” in North America, Ana Aparicio, Phil Kretsedemas, and Kalyani Rhai, eds, (NY: Praeger-Greenwood). Also see La Mujer Obrera, Exploring and Promoting Adequate Health Care Coverage Among Displaced Workers, presented by Suzanna and Abel Fernández, El Paso, 1999.Google Scholar
  6. 4.
    Sidney Tarrow, Power in Movement: Social Movements and Contentious Politics (NY: Cambridge University Press, 1998), pp. 19–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 5.
    Benjamin Marquez, Power and Politics in a Chicano Barrio: A Study of Mobilization Efforts and Community Power in El Paso (Lanham, MD: University Press of America), 1985; Staudt; U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, Mexican American Education Study, 1971–74 (six volumes) (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Commission on Civil Rights).Google Scholar
  8. 6.
    Ellwyn Stoddard, “Patterns of Poverty Along the U.S.-Mexico Border,” El Paso: Center for Inter-American and Border Studies, University of Texas at El Paso, 1978.Google Scholar
  9. 8.
    Gloria Anzaldúa, Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza (San Francisco: Spinsters/Aunt Lute Press), 1987; Spener and Staudt, 1998, selections.Google Scholar
  10. 9.
    Oscar Martinez, Border People: Life and Society in the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1994), 60; then pp. 6–9 on categories.Google Scholar
  11. 10.
    Oscar Martinez, “The Dynamics of Border Interaction: New Approaches to Border Analysis,” in Global Boundaries, ed. Clive H. Schofield (London: Routledge, 1994), 4.Google Scholar
  12. 13.
    Clifford Geertz, The Interpretation of Cultures: Selected Essays (NY: Basic Books, 2000 [1973, originally]).Google Scholar
  13. 14.
    See Deborah Stone, Policy Paradox: The Art of Political Decision-Making (NY: W. W. Norton, 1997), on numeric metaphors.Google Scholar
  14. 15.
    Robert Alvarez, ed. Human Organization 60, 2 (special issue on the U.S.-Mexico border), 2001.Google Scholar
  15. 17.
    Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México, Mexico-U.S. Migration: A Shared Responsibility (Washington, D.C., CEIP, 2000), Karl Eschbach et al., “Death at the Border,” International Migration Review 33, pp. 430–54.Google Scholar
  16. 18.
    Tanis Slant et al., Illegal Immigrants in U.S.-Mexico Border Counties: Costs of Law Enforcement, Criminal Justice and Emergency Medical Services. Commissioned by the U.S./Mexico Border Counties Coalition. (Tucson: University of Arizona Institute for Local Government, 2001).Google Scholar
  17. 21.
    Murray Edelman, The Symbolic Uses of Politics (Champaign-Urbana: University of Illinois Press) 1964.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kathleen Staudt and Irasema Coronado 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen Staudt
  • Irasema Coronado

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations