Diversity Talks: Federal Border Policy, Migration, and the Desert Landscape

Date & time

Mar 14, 2012, 11:30 am-1:00 pm EDT


Diversity Talks is a seminar series led by guest faculty members to discuss policy issues relating to race and underserved communities of color. In each seminar session, a particular topic will be discussed engaging issues of public policy, race, and other related fields to promote an interdisciplinary and alternative approach to policymaking. There will be time for lunch, a presentation by the guest faculty member, and an open discussion with the students attending the seminar.

Professor Jason De Leon, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, University of Michigan, will primarily focus on the ways that federal border enforcement policies have employed the Sonora Desert of Arizona as a geographic deterrent to undocumented migration. He will address:
  • How the desert has become a tool of enforcement that has helped shape border crossing into a violent social process that claims the lives of hundreds of people annually;
  • The desert's active role in the the construction and maintenance of various forms of structural violence;
  • The ways in which anti-immigrant groups have used the cause of environmental protection to both demonize migrants and ignore the complex role that the desert plays in border enforcement policies.

This event is sponsored by: the Students of Color in Public Policy (SCPP) in partnership with the Center for Public Policy in Diverse Societies of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.