Guatemala-U.S. Migration: Transforming Regions (Paperback)
Guatemala-U.S. Migration: Transforming Regions is a pioneering, comprehensive, and multifaceted study of Guatemalan migration to the United States from the late 1970s to the present. It analyzes this migration in a regional context including Guatemala, Mexico, and the United States. This book illuminates the perilous passage through Mexico for Guatemalan migrants, as well as their settlement in various U.S. venues. Moreover, it builds on existing theoretical frameworks and breaks new ground by analyzing the construction and transformations of this migration region and transregional dimensions of migration.
Seamlessly blending multiple sociological perspectives, this book addresses the experiences of both Maya and ladino Guatemalan migrants, incorporating gendered as well as ethnic and class dimensions of migration. It spans the most violent years of the civil war and the postwar years in Guatemala, hence including both refugees and labor migrants. The demographic chapter delineates five phases of Guatemalan migration to the United States since the late 1970s, with immigrants experiencing both inclusion and exclusion very dramatically during the most recent phase, in the early twenty-first century. This book also features an innovative study of Guatemalan migrant rights organizing in the United States and transregionally in Guatemala/Central America and Mexico. The two contrasting in-depth case studies of Guatemalan communities in Houston and San Francisco elaborate in vibrant detail the everyday experiences and evolving stories of the immigrants’ lives.
About the Author
A scholar of Latin America, particularly Guatemala and Central America, for more than four decades, SUSANNE JONAS was on the faculty of the University of California, Santa Cruz for twenty-four years and received a Distinguished Teaching Award. Her numerous previous books include Of Centaurs and Doves: Guatemala’s Peace Process, which was designated a Choice “Outstanding Academic Book.” Since the 1990s, she has become a specialist on Guatemalan/Central American migration and has collaborated with colleagues in Central America and Mexico.
NESTOR RODRÍGUEZ is Professor of Sociology and Research Associate of the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. With Cecilia Menjívar, he coedited When States Kill: Latin America, the U.S., and Technologies of Terror. He has studied Central American migration to the United States and the formation of Latino immigrant settlements for more than two decades.
"…an extremely timely, ground-breaking, and very well written account…of Guatemalan migration to the US…The authors take us far beyond the latest headlines in the first book-length study addressing Guatemalan migration to the US as a national, rather than community-specific, phenomenon. . . Migrants exercise agency in important ways, from deciding to migrate out of desperate conditions to building better living and working conditions in the US to clamoring to change migration policies to practicing cultural expressions and creating organizations in new communities. This in turn has affected the social structure in ways large and small as the larger immigration process reshapes communities across the US. Jonas and Rodríguez have made an outstanding scholarly contribution to our understanding of these issues in a book that deserves a wide readership and discussion."