Nicole Guidotti-Hernandez: Child-Citizen Subjects: From Dora the Explorer to Dream Activists

Thursday, February 7
4 pm
Comm 120

American Studies, University of Texas, Austin

The Latino/a child citizen subject has become the focal point for all sorts of discourses about citizenship, be they the figure of the Anchor Baby, Dora the Explorer as a potential illegal immigrant, the Dream Activists of Freedom University, or a newly emerging unprotected group, unaccompanied migrant children facing deportation proceedings. In this talk, I demonstrate the ways in which race, immigration status, social mobility, skin color, social class and gender determine whether or not a child is in fact deemed worthy of citizenship, worthy of being saved, and worthy of being incorporated into the nation. Larger media trends have made such Latinas/o child-citizen subjects increasingly visible in the last fifteen years as the U.S.-Mexico border is more militarized than ever.

Nicole Guidotti- Hernández is Associate Professor of American Studies and Associate Director of the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Texas. Her book Unspeakable Violence: Remapping U.S. and Mexican National Imaginaries was published by Duke University Press in 2011. She is currently working on two new books: ¡Santa Lucia! Contemporary Chicana and Latina Cultural Reinterpretations of Saint Iconographies and Red Devils and Railroads: Race, Gender and Capitalism in the Transnational Nineteenth Century Mexico Borderlands.

Presented as part of B/ordering Violence: Boundaries, Gender, Indigeneity in the Americas, a John E. Sawyer Seminar in Comparative Cultures generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and co-sponsored by the Latin American & Caribbean Studies program, the Jackson School of International Studies, the Simpson Center for the Humanities, and the Institute for the Study of Ethnicity, Race, & Sexuality (WISER). For more on the B/ordering Violence Seminar Series, visit

Wilson: “U.S. Border Patrol: The Rise of a Domestic Police State?”

Friday, February 1
4 pm
Thomson 317

Mike Wilson (Tohono O’odham) is a policy director of the Border Action Network. His work centers around providing humanitarian aid to undocumented peoples who cross through the deserts of southern Arizona. As a member of a sovereign Native nation and a member of the Border Action Network, Mike Wilson’s perspective provides insight into the context and impact of U.S. Border Patrol actions on the U.S.-Mexico border and within indigenous homelands.

Mike Wilson flyer

Aragon & Wilson: “Under Arpaio: a Documentary by Jason Aragon”

Thursday, January 31
3:30 pm
Allen Auditorium

“Under Arpaio” shows the grassroots resistance to Maricopa County, Arizona’s Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who prides himself on being the “toughest sheriff in America.” Arpaio prides himself on immigration raids on migrant and Latino neighborhoods, human rights violations in his jails, and wasting hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars. “Under Airpaio” features the grassroots activists from low-income migrant communities, the attorneys, reporters, elected officials, and indigenous people who speak truth to power.

Under Arpaio flyer

Lawson: A Crisis of Care and a Crisis of Borders: Towards Caring Citizenship

7 pm, Wednesday, November 7
Kane 110

Lawson considers the ethics and practices of care in the global era and invites a collective conversation about how we frame social citizenship, how we care and who cares for whom. As the demand for care in the U.S. is rapidly increasing while public support for care is falling dramatically, care needs are increasingly met in the market place where care is simultaneously commodified and devalued. According to Lawson, this “crisis of care” is often borne by low-income care providers, many of whom are racial-ethnic women who may be immigrants and who are often assumed to be undocumented. Here, she contends, the crisis of care meets a border crisis.

Since 1996, immigrants’ rights have been curtailed and border enforcement has been intensified and rescaled. Lawson explores how efforts to control the movement and work of undocumented migrants and asylum seekers have unleashed new spatial strategies of border enforcement that have shifted where the border is, and for whom the border comes into being. In some states, borders are being enforced in communities, workplaces, hospitals and schools. These border practices intensify the vulnerability of low-wage care providers regardless of their citizenship status, and contribute to the devaluation of care.

An internationally respected feminist geographer, Lawson is co-founder of the Relational Poverty Network and Middle Class Poverty Politics project. A past-president of the Association of American Geographers, she is also the author of Making Development Geography (2007) and serves as editor for the journal Progress in Human Geography.

Association for Border Studies CFP: December 1, 2012

The Association for Borderlands Studies invites proposals for individual papers and complete panels related to the study of borders. The organizing theme for the 2013 annual conference is BORDERS, TRANSNATIONALISM AND GLOBALIZATION: Contradictions, Challenges and Resolutions. This theme encompasses a wide range of topics and approaches, and it focuses on the continuing theoretical challenges of defining what borders are and how they work. Are borders actually changing in the 21st century? Are we resolving the basic questions of how borders both stop and allow, define and permit, open and close, separate and join? What we do know is that borderlands function as laboratories to understand changes due to globalization and transnationalism, and they allow us to capture and analyze these complex processes.