Tuesday, Feb 06, 2024
1:30pm - 3:00pm
Dr. David FitzGerald
For most of the twentieth century, the U.S.-Mexico border was overwhelmingly important as a barrier to Mexican migration to the United States. Yet it has also functioned as a barrier for Latin American migration to Canada, and increasingly is dominated by attempted movements from a widening circle of other nationalities, including asylum seekers from outside the Western Hemisphere. This presentation will put contemporary headlines into a broader geopolitical context to explain how migration enforcement at the U.S.-Mexico border is part of a much more widespread system of controls. Policies of the U.S., Canadian, and Mexican governments are highly interactive and cannot be understood simply by examining processes within each country. A historical perspective will show how policies dating to the late nineteenth century have recently shifted in surprising ways.
David Scott FitzGerald is Theodore E. Gildred Chair in U.S.-Mexican Relations and Professor of Sociology at the University of California San Diego. His books include The Refugee System: A Sociological Approach (Polity Press 2023); Refuge beyond Reach: How Rich Democracies Repel Asylum Seekers (Oxford University Press 2019); Culling the Masses: The Democratic Origins of Racist Immigration Policy in the Americas (Harvard University Press 2014); and Nation of Emigrants: How Mexico Manages its Migration (University of California Press 2009). FitzGerald’s work has received a dozen awards from the American Political Science Association, International Studies Association, and American Sociological Association, including the ASA Distinguished Scholarly Book Award.