Illegal Encounters: The Effect of Detention and Deportation on Young People

Illegal Encounters: The Effect of Detention and Deportation on Young People


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The impact of the U.S. immigration and legal systems on children and youth

In the United States, millions of children are undocumented migrants or have family members who came to the country without authorization. The unique challenges with which these children and youth must cope demand special attention. Illegal Encounters considers illegality, deportability, and deportation in the lives of young people—those who migrate as well as those who are affected by the migration of others.

A primary focus of the volume is to understand how children and youth encounter, move through, or are outside of a range of legal processes, including border enforcement, immigration detention, federal custody, courts, and state processes of categorization. Even if young people do not directly interact with state immigration systems—because they are U.S. citizens or have avoided detention—they are nonetheless deeply affected by the reach of the government in its many forms.

Contributors privilege the voices and everyday experiences of immigrant children and youth themselves. By combining different perspectives from advocates, service providers, attorneys, researchers, and young immigrants, the volume presents rich accounts that can contribute to informed debates and policy reforms.

Illegal Encounters sheds light on the unique ways in which policies, laws, and legal categories shape so much of daily life for young immigrants. The book makes visible the burdens, hopes, and potential of a population of young people and their families who have been largely hidden from public view and are currently under siege, following their movement through complicated immigration systems and institutions in the United States.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781479861071
Publisher: New York University Press
Publication date: 02/19/2019
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Deborah A. Boehm is Professor of Anthropology and Women’s Studies/Gender, Race, and Identity at the University of Nevada, Reno, and the author of Intimate Migrations: Gender, Family, and Illegality among Transnational Mexicans (NYU Press) and Returned: Going and Coming in an Age of Deportation.

Susan J. Terrio is Professor of Anthropology and French Studies at Georgetown University and the author of Whose Child am I?: Unaccompanied, Undocumented Children in U.S. Immigration Custody , Judging Mohammed: Juvenile Delinquency, Immigration and Exclusion at the Paris Palace of Justice and Crafting the Culture and History of French Chocolate.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Encounters with Illegality Deborah A. Boehm Susan J. Terrio 1

Part 1 In Confronting Enforcement, Detention, and Deportation 15

1 Risky Border Crossings Jason De León 19

2 Social Citizens and Their Right to Belong Tobin Hansen 32

3 Illegality and Children's Power in Families Joanna Dreby 45

Reflections: Entering Multiple Systems José Ortiz-Rosales Kristen Jackson 58

Reflections: Surviving Detention Williams Guevara Martínez 66

Part 2 Through: Navigating Laws And Legal Systems 73

4 The Post-1996 Immigrant Underclass Susan Bibler Coutin 76

5 Youth on Their Own Nina Rabin Cecilia Menjivar 89

6 Immigration Courts Susan J. Terrio 102

Reflections: Representing Unaccompanied Children Wendy Young Megan McKenna 114

Reflections: Judging Children Dana Leigh Marks 123

7 Youth Negotiate Deportation Lauren Heidbrink 135

8 Youth Activism Carolina Valdivia 147

9 Dreaming across Borders Deborah A. Boehm 159

Reflections: Looking Forward Abel Núñez Rachel Gittinger 171

Reflections: Still Dreaming Margarita Satas-Crespo 181

Commentary: The Best Mankind Has to Give? Jacqueline Bhabha 189

Acknowledgments 197

Notes 199

Bibliography 213

About the Editors 231

About the Contributors 233

Index 241

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