Learning to Stand on Shifting Sands: Sonoran Desert Capitalism, Alliance Politics, and Social Change
AuthorZimmerman, Caren Amelia
Committee ChairJoseph, Miranda
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractLearning to Stand on Shifting Sands: Sonoran Desert Capitalism, Alliance Politics, and Social Change offers a comparative analysis of activisms, labor organizing, and production practices in southern Arizona between 1999 and 2003. Using a combination of political economy, queer/feminist theory, transdisciplinary critical cultural studies, and discourse analysis, the research analyzes the broad social and ideological contexts, the tactics, the contradictions and the attempts and lost opportunities for building broader alliances for radical social change in contemporary Arizona. The case studies reckon with this experience, arguing that: Arizona's migrant workers have been strategically produced via media practices, border militarization, "development" discourse, and global production practices as flexible post-NAFTA commodities that enable formidable nationalist and heteronormative representation and political economic practices within the Sonoran desert border region. That local activism and labor organizing draws upon neoliberal "development" discourse strategies, and also breaks from these strategies in ways that suggests that the terms of production and exchange might be usefully applied towards outcomes that are outside of profit accumulation. That alliance practices that take structures and discourses of domination into account in estimations of value, even in production, can promote broader collaborations between activist organizations, cultural identities and single-issue politics. A politics of alliance that accounts for the interdependence of seemingly disparate practices of production, social oppression and culture might help invigorate contemporary grass roots struggles and promote social transformation.
Degree ProgramComparative Cultural & Literary Studies