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Immigration between U.S. and Mexico, 1810-2010: Home

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Introduction

Border between Mexico and USA, Las Playas, Tijuana, Mexico. Winter 2006 by Davidlud Wiki Commons

 

El hombre, antes que nada fue nómada. [...] Esta nomadización ha actuado como los grandes vientos, que cambian la superficie del paisaje, pero también como las corrientes submarinas, que transforman la composición del mar.

Octavio Paz

 

Human beings, from the outset, have been nomads. […] This nomadic nature has been like the strong winds that change the landscape, and also like underwater currents transforming the composition of the sea.

Octavio Paz

 

 

Migration means movement. Movement is a fact of life; all living beings, humans included, are in constant movement. When modern human migration collides with political and social barriers, the flow is funneled into immigration or emigration and movement becomes a conscious choice to cross the boundary and risk the consequence.

The exhibit "Beyond the Threshold: Migration Between Mexico and U.S. (1810-2010)" held in Memorial Library (Oct 20-Nov 30, 2010) along with this research guide hopes to show the big picture of the immigration and emigration between Mexico and the United States and their deeply rooted interconnections by looking past the media hype. We were inspired to start with 1810 by Mexico’s current bicentennial celebration of its independence. Our display of 200 years of political, social and economic history provides only a peek of what's beyond the threshold.

The Mexicans who now cross the border into Texas would have simply been relocating up North 200 years ago when Mexico gained its independence.  200 years ago, the Americans were the immigrants crossing the border and setting up make-shift towns in those lands. After studying primary documents from the 1800s that were both in favor and against such imperialistic advances on Mexico, we noticed that these men are discussing the similar issues we do now. For better or worse, we are still arguing about the same issues that we did 150 years ago when the U.S. “won” the Mexican-American War and signed the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo. When reading a speech in favor of supporting a republican Mexican government from Colonel Rosecrans in the 1850s, we could swear that we heard the same sentiments on NPR the week before. Our past political, social and economic engagements with other countries do not fade away but shape the future of our relationships.

 

Your Librarian

Paloma Celis-Carbajal
Contact:
2124 Memorial Library

728 State Street

Madison, WI 53706
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Topics Covered by this Research Guide

  • History of Mexico and US relations since 19th century
  • US-Mexico history 19th, 20th and 21st centuries
  • Mexico-US borderlands
  • Migration between Mexico and United States

Guide Created by...

This Subject Guide was created by Elizabeth Huggins and Paloma Celis Carbajal.