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Devil's Highway - Book Report/Review Example

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The title The Devil's Highway has reference to the oldest track to cross over to the United States from the Mexican boarder. This track goes through the Arizona desert, and is one of the most inhospitable places for humans. The temperature here is almost always above hundred degrees…
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Devil's Highway

Download file to see previous pages... The book prompts one to look at the issue of migration in a different angle, in a much more humane angle. These are people caught in between two governments and their contradictory policies. The Mexican Govt. is encouraging or at least is not stopping the illegal migration. The American Govt. is against immigration, but is not able to stop it fully for economic reasons.
The Mexican Govt. policy of not stopping the immigration has a historic reason. Historically the expansionist policies of the United States lead to the annexation of Mexican areas during what is called the Texas Revolution. After the futile war with Britain, (1812-15) the United States adopted a new strategy for annexation of bordering territories. Settle down, out number the natives, index the boundaries-this was the new strategy. Mexico was a Spanish colony that got liberated in 1821.The New Mexican Empire inherited, Alta California, New Mexico and Texas from Spain. The new Government, virtually bankrupt and weak, was unable to control the northern territories of the country. These areas were thousands of miles away from the capital of Mexico City. Hence, the Mexican Govt. allowed a few American families to cross over and settle. What followed were huge American settlements in Texas, which became an American majority area. The Texans wanted to accede to the United States. ...
When one looks at this historical perspective, Urrea's book forces one to see it all as a reversal of history. Historically the Americans migrated to Mexico, out numbered the Mexicans and annexed the land .When this historic process is reversed (56 % of total illegal immigrants into United States are Mexicans) Americans are getting scared that they too will get out-numbered! And the Nazi white man's organizations in America like the White-power Movement now fear of losing the purity of the American culture. They treat the Mexicans as criminals. . "Mexican ness in the campaign is associated not just with undocumented status but with criminal behavior in other areas as well. The schema of criminality was embedded in the meta-schema of racial realism and depicted racialized characteristics that threaten the safety and power of others." (Robin Dale Jacobson, The New Nativism PP48) Thus once inside the United States, these Mexicans are faced with cruel inhuman racial abuses. That's a story beyond Urrea's book. Devil's Highway continues beyond the borders.
Many of the real life characters from Urrea's Devil's Highway are from Veracruz. Veracruz is Mexico's second largest coffee producing state. The low international price for coffe had put the coffee farmers into a crisis. The flight from the coffee growing areas of Mexico started as early as October 2000 (Urrea's characters crossed the border in May 2001) when harvesting was ready. There was neither cash nor finances available for harvesting. The international price of coffee was eight year low. Thus not only the farmers , but even the farm workers started to take the risk of trying to cross over the 'Devil's Highway' into the "heaven" of the United States. There are ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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