Stories in Mexico and the United States About the Border: The Rhetoric and the Realities

Intercultural Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 5, No. 241, 2010

UNM School of Law Research Paper No. 2010-06

73 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2010 Last revised: 17 Sep 2010

See all articles by Gloria Valencia-Weber

Gloria Valencia-Weber

University of New Mexico - School of Law

Antoinette Sedillo Lopez

University of New Mexico - School of Law

Date Written: August 24, 2010

Abstract

Our goal in this article is to demonstrate how perspective, political agenda, and personal experiences affect how stories about the Mexico-U.S. Border are framed. The framing is shaped by audience and emotional appeal, as well as political agenda. Stories framed and portrayed as personal experiences and stock narratives about a group or country can shape the attitude, experience, and behavior of others.

Our discussion will: 1) examine the concept of using word choices and metaphors as devices in storytelling to frame political, economic and social issues, which are meant to evoke certain emotional responses among specific audiences in the immigration debates; 2) describe the legal history of the border as a legal and social construct as background for the stories that are told about immigration; 3) demonstrate with examples of stories published in Mexico and the U.S. that portray how some stories about the border are being framed in the U.S. and in Mexico by identifying word choices, metaphors, audience, social and/or political connections and emotional responses provoked in these narratives, particularly examples of stories published in Mexico; 4) examine the traditional mental frames created by the border stories that do not describe the effect of U.S. policies and practices on a cross-national indigenous community; and finally 5) demonstrate how the members of the transnational tribal communities have worked to tell their own stories about the lived realities of their border experiences.

Suggested Citation

Valencia-Weber, Gloria and Sedillo Lopez, Antoinette, Stories in Mexico and the United States About the Border: The Rhetoric and the Realities (August 24, 2010). Intercultural Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 5, No. 241, 2010 ; UNM School of Law Research Paper No. 2010-06. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1664647

Gloria Valencia-Weber (Contact Author)

University of New Mexico - School of Law ( email )

1117 Stanford, N.E.
Albuquerque, NM 87131
United States

Antoinette Sedillo Lopez

University of New Mexico - School of Law ( email )

1117 Stanford, N.E.
Albuquerque, NM 87131
United States

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