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Border issues across Latin America highlight NMSU speaker series

While much is said and written about the issues surrounding the U.S.-Mexico divide, similar transnational concerns are being faced along borders throughout Latin America.


Cross-border issues across the Americas create the linking theme of New Mexico State University's Center for Latin American and Border Studies' spring speaker series kicking off later this month.

"The particular emphasis this semester is on looking beyond the U.S.-Mexico border in order to focus on a number of topics that relate to border regions throughout the hemisphere," said Iñigo García-Bryce, director of the Center for Latin American and Border Studies.

The spring speaker series begins March 14, when Rodolfo Acosta discusses the critical topic of drug-related violence along the U.S.-Mexico border. Acosta received his Ph.D. in economic development at NMSU.

On April 4, Barbara Tenenbaum, a Mexico specialist at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., will offer a look at documents and photographs about the Mexican Revolution that are currently held in the library. The Mexican Revolution, which raged from 1910 to 1920, had a profound impact on Latin America. Many of the major flashpoints in the revolution occurred along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Chilean historian Alberto Harambour of the Universidad Diego Portales, Chile, will look at a South American border conflict, this one in the Patagonia region. The territory has been a source of dispute between Argentina and Chile from the 19th century to the present. Harambour's presentation takes place on April 12.

During his April 18 presentation, NMSU Mexican scholar-in-residence Alvaro Martinez of the Universidad Autónoma de Chiapas will address the immigration and security issues along the border of Mexico and the Central American countries of Guatemala and Belize.

The speaker series ends on April 25 with Dr. Andrea Orzoff, an associate history professor at NMSU, discussing the cross-border movements of refugees from Nazi Germany across Latin America. Orzoff contends that the refugees contributed to the building of a classical music tradition in the Andean region.

The Center for Latin American and Border Studies was created at NMSU in 1979. The center's mission is to promote excellence in teaching, research and community outreach on issues concerning Latin America, the U.S.-Mexico border and border studies in general.

All lectures for the spring speaker series take place at 4 p.m. at Nason House on the NMSU campus. The events are free to the public. Fore more information, call 575-646-6814.