Bordertown: The Odyssey of an American Place

Bordertown: The Odyssey of an American Place

by Benjamin Heber Johnson, Jeffrey Gusky, Luis Alberto Urrea
     
 

Mexico and America have met for eight generations on their shared border. In this compelling book, photographer Jeffrey Gusky and historian Benjamin Johnson capture this encounter through their mesmerizing portrayal of Roma, Texas.

European culture left its mark here, but it was brought by mixed-race, Spanish-speaking pioneers who practiced Muslim irrigation

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Overview

Mexico and America have met for eight generations on their shared border. In this compelling book, photographer Jeffrey Gusky and historian Benjamin Johnson capture this encounter through their mesmerizing portrayal of Roma, Texas.

European culture left its mark here, but it was brought by mixed-race, Spanish-speaking pioneers who practiced Muslim irrigation techniques and believed that they were descended from Jews. Triumphant American armies made this region part of the United States, but the descendants of those they conquered have fought in every American conflict from the Civil War to Iraq. Racial strife divided this land, but slaves gained freedom by fleeing south to Mexico and Hispanics reacquired wealth and power by buying out Anglos. Although today the area is one of the poorest in the United States, the fortune that founded Citibank was made here and the town has inspired such authors as John Steinbeck and Larry McMurtry.

In a time when the border is a source of controversy and division, Johnson’s unexpected stories and Gusky’s haunting photographs demonstrate how deeply the story of the border is also the story of America itself.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300139280
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
09/30/2008
Series:
The Lamar Series in Western History
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
8.60(w) x 9.70(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Foreword Luis Alberto Urrea Urrea, Luis Alberto

Introduction 1

William Emory 17

Jose Maria Garcia Saens 33

Charles Stillman 59

Heinrich Portscheller 81

Jovita Gonzalez 101

Gilberto Carza 125

Elia Kazan 143

Hugo Van Den Bussche 153

Conclusion 173

Bibliography 193

List of Photographs 199

Index 205

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