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Border Rhetorics, Border Rhetorics, 0817357165, 0-8173-5716-5, 978-0-8173-5716-0, 9780817357160, , Rhetoric, Culture, and Social Critique, Border Rhetorics, 081738605X, 0-8173-8605-X, 978-0-8173-8605-4, 9780817386054, , Rhetoric, Culture, and Social Critiqu

Border Rhetorics
Citizenship and Identity on the US-Mexico Frontier
Edited by D. Robert DeChaine

Quality Paper
2012. 284 pp.
Price:  $34.95 s
E Book
2012. 288 pp.
Price:  $34.95 d

Undertakes a wide-ranging examination of the US-Mexico border as it functions in the rhetorical production of civic unity in the United States

A “border” is a powerful and versatile concept, variously invoked as the delineation of geographical territories, as a judicial marker of citizenship, and as an ideological trope for defining inclusion and exclusion. It has implications for both the empowerment and subjugation of any given populace. Both real and imagined, the border separates a zone of physical and symbolic exchange whose geographical, political, economic, and cultural interactions bear profoundly on popular understandings and experiences of citizenship and identity.

The border’s rhetorical significance is nowhere more apparent, nor its effects more concentrated, than on the frontier between the United States and Mexico. Often understood as an unruly boundary in dire need of containment from the ravages of criminals, illegal aliens, and other undesirable threats to the national body, this geopolitical locus exemplifies how normative constructions of “proper”; border relations reinforce definitions of US citizenship, which in turn can lead to anxiety, unrest, and violence centered around the struggle to define what it means to be a member of a national political community.


Bernadette Marie Calafell / Karma R. Chávez / Josue David Cisneros / D. Robert DeChaine / Anne Teresa Demo / Lisa A. Flores / Dustin Bradley Goltz / Marouf Hasian Jr. / Michelle A. Holling / Julia R. Johnson / Zach Juatus / Diane M. Keeling / John Louis Lucaites / George F. McHendry Jr. / Toby Miller / Kent A. Ono / Brian L. Ott / Kimberlee Pérez / Mary Ann Villarreal

D. Robert DeChaine is a professor of communication and cultural studies at California State University, Los Angeles. He is the author of Global Humanitarianism: NGOs and the Crafting of Community, and his essays have appeared in journals such as the Journal of Communication Inquiry, Popular Music and Society, the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Text and Performance Quarterly, and the Western Journal of Communication.

“This engaging collection of essays explores the discursive power of ’the border’ in the US national imaginary. Border Rhetorics details the consequences of the border as a site of domination and resistance, pointing to its rhetorical power to constitute identities and shape political landscapes.” —Jeffrey A. Bennett, author of Banning Queer Blood: Rhetorics of Citizenship, Contagion, and Resistance

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