Of coyotes, crossings, and cooperation: Social capital and women's migration at the margins of the state

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: Examined here are some of the tenets of social capital in the context of the migrants' crossing the U.S.-Mexico border without official authorization. Using this context helps identify how social capital development is weakened by the structural and gendered dimensions of migration, contributing to the rise in undocumented border crosser deaths since 1993. Approach: A selection of published works provide an overview of social capital, and in particular, how the framework has been used to further our understanding of the process of migration and immigrant settlement in new destinations. The principles of social capital are then examined in light of women's border crossing experiences and used to argue that migrants from emerging migrant-sending states in southern and central Mexico have had less time to accumulate resource-enhancing migrationrelated social capital. The narratives of repatriated women collected during research on the border in 2006-2007 are used to illustrate how controlling environments undermine the acquisition of social capital at a critical time. Findings: The selection of narratives of women who were repatriated after attempting to cross into the United States without authorization illustrate the perilous interplay of hardening border enforcement and multiplying illicit border smuggling organizations. The outcome is the downward leveling of social capital on the border that potentially poses greater life-threatening risks for migrants. Originality/value: This study provides a theoretical understanding that can be used to explain rising levels of violence along the U.S.-Mexico border that increasingly engulf migrants fleeing poverty in Mexico.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationResearch in Economic Anthropology
Pages133-160
Number of pages28
Volume32
DOIs
StatePublished - 2012

Publication series

NameResearch in Economic Anthropology
Volume32
ISSN (Print)01901281

Fingerprint

social capital
migration
migrant
Mexico
authorization
narrative
smuggling
levelling
Social capital
Margin
immigrant
Migrants
poverty
violence
death
resources
Values
experience

Keywords

  • Border enforcement
  • Migration
  • Smuggling
  • Social capital
  • Violence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Anthropology

Cite this

Oleary, A. M. (2012). Of coyotes, crossings, and cooperation: Social capital and women's migration at the margins of the state. In Research in Economic Anthropology (Vol. 32, pp. 133-160). (Research in Economic Anthropology; Vol. 32). https://doi.org/10.1108/S0190-1281(2012)0000032010

Of coyotes, crossings, and cooperation : Social capital and women's migration at the margins of the state. / Oleary, Anna M.

Research in Economic Anthropology. Vol. 32 2012. p. 133-160 (Research in Economic Anthropology; Vol. 32).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Oleary, AM 2012, Of coyotes, crossings, and cooperation: Social capital and women's migration at the margins of the state. in Research in Economic Anthropology. vol. 32, Research in Economic Anthropology, vol. 32, pp. 133-160. https://doi.org/10.1108/S0190-1281(2012)0000032010
Oleary, Anna M. / Of coyotes, crossings, and cooperation : Social capital and women's migration at the margins of the state. Research in Economic Anthropology. Vol. 32 2012. pp. 133-160 (Research in Economic Anthropology).
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