Vestiges of other relations: Weaving our lives across a two-nation divide
Sociology, Theory and Methods.
Sociology, Individual and Family Studies.
AdvisorHill, Jane H.
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.
AbstractThis study, grounded on fieldwork carried out in the cities of El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, looks at the narratives of women who describe themselves, and are identified by others, as belonging to what is called in Mexico, the well-positioned middle classes. From these narratives of privilege, the author looks at the differentiating ways of these women and includes, within theoretical and historical contexts, their narration of life stories that are laced with issues of social class, gendered subjectivities and nation-ness. The author engaged the narrations of women of Mexican descent living on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico political divide, contrasting the ways they live the suggested positioning within specific social, political and economic structures and systems developed in the area. This positionality, as well as its normalizing ways, was usually addressed through elaborations of the commonly used expression, "our customs." By following these elaborations of location within a perceived and lived social space, the author notes that the "customs" primarily reference a specific location of social class and, as part of this privileged positioning, the customs include particular ways of participating in pious activities as well as in the promotion of localized processes of nation making. The customs further referenced historical moments of regional importance. Based on these observations, the author takes the position that the discourse observed and analyzed at present reflects not only the vestiges of past political and economic relations of social consequences but also the fact that some people weave their lives at this border site by navigating both sides of the political divide. The data obtained from the fieldwork experience was derived not only through the collection and analysis of life stories, but also through the participant-observation activities carried out over an extended period of time. In addition, the author is a native and long-term resident of this border site between the United States and Mexico.
Degree ProgramGraduate College