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1. cover
Title: Whitewashed adobe: the rise of Los Angeles and the remaking of its Mexican past
Author: Deverell, William Francis
Published: University of California Press,  2004
Subjects: History | Californian and Western History | Chicano Studies | American Studies | Urban Studies
Publisher's Description: Chronicling the rise of Los Angeles through shifting ideas of race and ethnicity, William Deverell offers a unique perspective on how the city grew and changed. Whitewashed Adobe considers six different developments in the history of the city - including the cementing of the Los Angeles River, the outbreak of bubonic plague in 1924, and the evolution of America's largest brickyard in the 1920s. In an absorbing narrative supported by a number of previously unpublished period photographs, Deverell shows how a city that was once part of Mexico itself came of age through appropriating - and even obliterating - the region's connections to Mexican places and people. Deverell portrays Los Angeles during the 1850s as a city seething with racial enmity due to the recent war with Mexico. He explains how, within a generation, the city's business interests, looking for a commercially viable way to establish urban identity, borrowed Mexican cultural traditions and put on a carnival called La Fiesta de Los Angeles. He analyzes the subtle ways in which ethnicity came to bear on efforts to corral the unpredictable Los Angeles River and shows how the resident Mexican population was put to work fashioning the modern metropolis. He discusses how Los Angeles responded to the nation's last major outbreak of bubonic plague and concludes by considering the Mission Play, a famed drama tied to regional assumptions about history, progress, and ethnicity. Taking all of these elements into consideration, Whitewashed Adobe uncovers an urban identity - and the power structure that fostered it - with far-reaching implications for contemporary Los Angeles.   [brief]
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2. cover
Title: Race, police, and the making of a political identity: Mexican Americans and the Los Angeles Police Department, 1900-1945
Author: Escobar, Edward J 1946-
Published: University of California Press,  1999
Subjects: History | California and the West | Latin American History | Latino Studies | Social Problems | Politics | Californian and Western History | Urban Studies | Criminology | Criminology
Publisher's Description: In June 1943, the city of Los Angeles was wrenched apart by the worst rioting it had seen to that point in the twentieth century. Incited by sensational newspaper stories and the growing public hysteria over allegations of widespread Mexican American juvenile crime, scores of American servicemen, joined by civilians and even police officers, roamed the streets of the city in search of young Mexican American men and boys wearing a distinctive style of dress called a Zoot Suit. Once found, the Zoot Suiters were stripped of their clothes, beaten, and left in the street. Over 600 Mexican American youths were arrested. The riots threw a harsh light upon the deteriorating relationship between the Los Angeles Mexican American community and the Los Angeles Police Department in the 1940s.In this study, Edward J. Escobar examines the history of the relationship between the Los Angeles Police Department and the Mexican American community from the turn of the century to the era of the Zoot Suit Riots. Escobar shows the changes in the way police viewed Mexican Americans, increasingly characterizing them as a criminal element, and the corresponding assumption on the part of Mexican Americans that the police were a threat to their community. The broader implications of this relationship are, as Escobar demonstrates, the significance of the role of the police in suppressing labor unrest, the growing connection between ideas about race and criminality, changing public perceptions about Mexican Americans, and the rise of Mexican American political activism.   [brief]
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3. cover
Title: "Mi raza primero!" (My people first!): nationalism, identity, and insurgency in the Chicano movement in Los Angeles, 1966-1978
Author: Chávez, Ernesto 1962-
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: History | California and the West | Californian and Western History | Chicano Studies | Sociology | Politics | Social Problems | Immigration
Publisher's Description: ¡Mi Raza Primero! is the first book to examine the Chicano movement's development in one locale - in this case Los Angeles, home of the largest population of people of Mexican descent outside of Mexico City. Ernesto Chávez focuses on four organizations that constituted the heart of the movement: The Brown Berets, the Chicano Moratorium Committee, La Raza Unida Party, and the Centro de Acción Social Autónomo, commonly known as CASA. Chávez examines and chronicles the ideas and tactics of the insurgency's leaders and their followers who, while differing in their goals and tactics, nonetheless came together as Chicanos and reformers. Deftly combining personal recollection and interviews of movement participants with an array of archival, newspaper, and secondary sources, Chávez provides an absorbing account of the events that constituted the Los Angeles-based Chicano movement. At the same time he offers insights into the emergence and the fate of the movement elsewhere. He presents a critical analysis of the concept of Chicano nationalism, an idea shared by all leaders of the insurgency, and places it within a larger global and comparative framework. Examining such variables as gender, class, age, and power relationships, this book offers a sophisticated consideration of how ethnic nationalism and identity functioned in the United States during the 1960s and 1970s.   [brief]
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4. cover
Title: L.A. city limits: African American Los Angeles from the Great Depression to the present
Author: Sides, Josh 1972-
Published: University of California Press,  2004
Subjects: History | African American Studies | Urban Studies | Californian and Western History | California and the West
Publisher's Description: In 1964 an Urban League survey ranked Los Angeles as the most desirable city for African Americans to live in. In 1965 the city burst into flames during one of the worst race riots in the nation's history. How the city came to such a pass - embodying both the best and worst of what urban America offered black migrants from the South - is the story told for the first time in this history of modern black Los Angeles. A clear-eyed and compelling look at black struggles for equality in L.A.'s neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces from the Great Depression to our day, L.A. City Limits critically refocuses the ongoing debate about the origins of America's racial and urban crisis. Challenging previous analysts' near-exclusive focus on northern "rust-belt" cities devastated by de-industrialization, Josh Sides asserts that the cities to which black southerners migrated profoundly affected how they fared. He shows how L.A.'s diverse racial composition, dispersive geography, and dynamic postwar economy often created opportunities - and limits - quite different from those encountered by blacks in the urban North.   [brief]
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5. cover
Title: The price of poverty: money, work, and culture in the Mexican-American barrio
Author: Dohan, Daniel 1965-
Published: University of California Press,  2003
Subjects: Anthropology | Sociology | Social Problems | Urban Studies | Latin American Studies | Chicano Studies | Labor Studies
Publisher's Description: Drawing on two years of ethnographic fieldwork in two impoverished California communities - one made up of recent immigrants from Mexico, the other of U.S.-born Chicano citizens - this book provides an invaluable comparative perspective on Latino poverty in contemporary America. In northern California's high-tech Silicon Valley, author Daniel Dohan shows how recent immigrants get by on low-wage babysitting and dish-cleaning jobs. In the housing projects of Los Angeles, he documents how families and communities of U.S.-born Mexican Americans manage the social and economic dislocations of persistent poverty. Taking readers into worlds where public assistance, street crime, competition for low-wage jobs, and family, pride, and cross-cultural experiences intermingle, The Price of Poverty offers vivid portraits of everyday life in these Mexican American communities while addressing urgent policy questions such as: What accounts for joblessness? How can we make sense of crime in poor communities? Does welfare hurt or help?   [brief]
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6. cover
Title: Gendered transitions: Mexican experiences of immigration
Author: Hondagneu-Sotelo, Pierrette
Published: University of California Press,  1994
Subjects: Sociology | Latin American Studies | Gender Studies | Chicano Studies | Women's Studies
Publisher's Description: The momentous influx of Mexican undocumented workers into the United States over the last decades has spurred new ways of thinking about immigration. Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo's incisive book enlarges our understanding of these recently arrived Americans and uncovers the myriad ways that women and men recreate families and community institutions in a new land.Hondagneu-Sotelo argues that people do not migrate as a result of concerted household strategies, but as a consequence of negotiations often fraught with conflict in families and social networks. Migration and settlement transform long-held ideals and lifestyles. Traditional patterns are reevaluated, and new relationships - often more egalitarian - emerge. Women gain greater personal autonomy and independence as they participate in public life and gain access to both social and economic influence previously beyond their reach.Bringing to life the experiences of undocumented immigrants and delineating the key role of women in newly established communities, Gendered Transitions challenges conventional assumptions about gender and migration. It will be essential reading for demographers, historians, sociologists, and policymakers."I've opened my eyes. Back there, they say 'no.' You marry, and no, you must stay home. Here, it's different. You marry, and you continue working. Back in Mexico, it's very different. There is very much machismo in those men." - A Mexican woman living in the United States   [brief]
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7. cover
Title: The city: Los Angeles and urban theory at the end of the twentieth century
Author: Scott, Allen John
Published: University of California Press,  1997
Subjects: Urban Studies | Geography | Sociology | California and the West | American Studies
Publisher's Description: Los Angeles has grown from a scattered collection of towns and villages to one of the largest megacities in the world. In the process, it has inspired controversy among critics and scholars, as well as among its residents. Seeking original perspectives rather than consensus, the editors of The City have assembled a variety of essays examining the built environment and human dynamics of this extraordinary modern city, emphasizing the dramatic changes that have occurred since 1960. Together the essays - by experts in urban planning, architecture, geography, and sociology - create a new kind of urban analysis, one that is open to diversity but strongly committed to collective theoretical and practical understanding.   [brief]
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8. cover
Title: How the other half works: immigration and the social organization of labor
Author: Waldinger, Roger David
Published: University of California Press,  2003
Subjects: Sociology | Urban Studies | Ethnic Studies | Labor Studies | Immigration | Chicano Studies | Social Problems | Urban Studies | California and the West | California and the West
Publisher's Description: How the Other Half Works solves the riddle of America's contemporary immigration puzzle: why an increasingly high-tech society has use for so many immigrants who lack the basic skills that today's economy seems to demand. In clear and engaging style, Waldinger and Lichter isolate the key factors that explain the presence of unskilled immigrants in our midst. Focusing on Los Angeles, the capital of today's immigrant America, this hard-hitting book elucidates the other side of the new economy, showing that hiring is finding not so much "one's own kind" but rather the "right kind" to fit the demeaning, but indispensable, jobs many American workers disdain.   [brief]
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9. cover
Title: Los Angeles and the automobile: the making of the modern city
Author: Bottles, Scott L
Published: University of California Press,  1987
Subjects: American Studies | Californian and Western History | Urban Studies | United States History | American Studies
Publisher's Description: More comprehensive than any other book on this topic, Los Angeles and the Automobile places the evolution of Los Angeles within the context of American political and urban history.
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10. cover
Title: Mexican ballads, Chicano poems: history and influence in Mexican-American social poetry online access is available to everyone
Author: Limón, José Eduardo
Published: University of California Press,  1992
Subjects: Literature | Literary Theory and Criticism | American Literature | American Studies | Latin American History | Folklore and Mythology
Publisher's Description: Mexican Ballads, Chicano Poems combines literary theory with the personal engagement of a prominent Chicano scholar. Recalling his experiences as a student in Texas, José Limón examines the politically motivated Chicano poetry of the 60s and 70s. He bases his analyses on Harold Bloom's theories of literary influence but takes Bloom into the socio-political realm. Limón shows how Chicano poetry is nourished by the oral tradition of the Mexican corrido , or master ballad, which was a vital part of artistic and political life along the Mexican-U.S. border from 1890 to 1930.Limón's use of Bloom, as well as of Marxist critics Raymond Williams and Fredric Jameson, brings Chicano literature into the arena of contemporary literary theory. By focusing on an important but little-studied poetic tradition, his book challenges our ideas of the American canon and extends the reach of Hispanists and folklorists as well.   [brief]
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11. cover
Title: Migrant daughter: coming of age as a Mexican American woman
Author: Tywoniak, Frances Esquibel 1931-
Published: University of California Press,  2000
Subjects: Ethnic Studies | Women's Studies | Chicano Studies | California and the West | Californian and Western History | Autobiographies and Biographies
Publisher's Description: Taking us from the open spaces of rural New Mexico and the fields of California's Great Central Valley to the intellectual milieu of student life in Berkeley during the 1950s, this memoir, based on an oral history by Mario T. García, is the powerful and moving testimonio of a young Mexican American woman's struggle to rise out of poverty. Migrant Daughter is the coming-of-age story of Frances Esquibel Tywoniak, who was born in Spanish-speaking New Mexico, moved with her family to California during the Depression to attend school and work as a farm laborer, and subsequently won a university scholarship, becoming one of the few Mexican Americans to attend the University of California, Berkeley, at that time. Giving a personal perspective on the conflicts of living in and between cultures, this eloquent story provides a rare glimpse into the life of a young Mexican American woman who achieved her dreams of obtaining a university education. In addition to the many fascinating details of everyday life the narrative provides, Mario T. García's introduction contextualizes the place and importance of Tywoniak's life. Both introduction and narrative illustrate the process by which Tywoniak negotiated her relation to ethnic identity and cultural allegiances, the ways in which she came to find education as a channel for breaking with fieldwork patterns of life, and the effect of migration on family and culture. This deeply personal memoir portrays a courageous Mexican American woman moving between many cultural worlds, a life story that at times parallels, and at times diverges from, the real life experiences of thousands of other, unnamed women.   [brief]
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12. cover
Title: The fragmented metropolis: Los Angeles, 1850-1930
Author: Fogelson, Robert M
Published: University of California Press,  1993
Subjects: Urban Studies | California and the West | Geography | United States History
Publisher's Description: Here with a new preface, a new foreword, and an updated bibliography is the definitive history of Los Angeles from its beginnings as an agricultural village of fewer than 2,000 people to its emergence as a metropolis of more than 2 million in 1930 - a city whose distinctive structure, character, and . . . [more]
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13. cover
Title: Hazardous metropolis: flooding and urban ecology in Los Angeles
Author: Orsi, Jared 1970-
Published: University of California Press,  2004
Subjects: History | California and the West | Urban Studies | Water | Urban Studies
Publisher's Description: Although better known for its sunny skies, Los Angeles suffers devastating flooding. This book explores a fascinating and little-known chapter in the city's history - the spectacular failures to control floods that occurred throughout the twentieth century. Despite the city's 114 debris dams, 5 flood control basins, and nearly 500 miles of paved river channels, Southern Californians have discovered that technologically engineered solutions to flooding are just as disaster-prone as natural waterways. Jared Orsi's lively history unravels the strange and often hazardous ways that engineering, politics, and nature have come together in Los Angeles to determine the flow of water. He advances a new paradigm - the urban ecosystem - for understanding the city's complex and unpredictable waterways and other issues that are sure to play a large role in future planning. As he traces the flow of water from sky to sea, Orsi brings together many disparate and intriguing pieces of the story, including local and national politics, the little-known San Gabriel Dam fiasco, the phenomenal growth of Los Angeles, and, finally, the influence of environmentalism. Orsi provocatively widens his vision toward other cities for which Los Angeles may offer a lesson - both of things gone wrong and a glimpse of how they might be improved.   [brief]
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14. cover
Title: Behind the label: inequality in the Los Angeles apparel industry
Author: Bonacich, Edna
Published: University of California Press,  2000
Subjects: Sociology | Social Problems | California and the West | Labor Studies | Economics and Business | Urban Studies | American Studies | Ethnic Studies
Publisher's Description: In a study crucial to our understanding of American social inequality, Edna Bonacich and Richard Appelbaum investigate the return of sweatshops to the apparel industry, especially in Los Angeles. The "new" sweatshops, they say, need to be understood in terms of the decline in the American welfare state and its strong unions and the rise in global and flexible production. Apparel manufacturers now have the incentive to move production to wherever low-wage labor can be found, while maintaining arm's-length contractual relations that protect them from responsibility. The flight of the industry has led to a huge rise in apparel imports to the United States and to a decline in employment. Los Angeles, however, remains a puzzling exception in that its industry employment has continued to grow, to the point where L.A. is the largest center of apparel production in the nation. Not only the availability of low-wage immigrant (often undocumented) workers but also the focus on moderately priced, fashion-sensitive women's wear makes this possible. Behind the Label examines the players in the L.A. apparel industry, including manufacturers, retailers, contractors, and workers, evaluating the maldistribution of wealth and power. The authors explore government and union efforts to eradicate sweatshops while limiting the flight to Mexico and elsewhere, and they conclude with a description of the growing antisweatshop movement. Los Angeles Times Best Nonfiction Book of 2000   [brief]
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15. cover
Title: Refried Elvis: the rise of the Mexican counterculture online access is available to everyone
Author: Zolov, Eric
Published: University of California Press,  1999
Subjects: History | Latin American History | Popular Culture | Chicano Studies | Latin American Studies | Contemporary Music
Publisher's Description: This powerful study shows how America's biggest export, rock and roll, became a major influence in Mexican politics, society, and culture. From the arrival of Elvis in Mexico during the 1950s to the emergence of a full-blown counterculture movement by the late 1960s, Eric Zolov uses rock and roll to illuminate Mexican history through these charged decades and into the 1970s. This fascinating narrative traces the rechanneling of youth energies away from political protest in the wake of the 1968 student movement and into counterculture rebellion, known as La Onda (The Wave). Refried Elvis accounts for the events of 1968 and their aftermath by revealing a mounting crisis of patriarchal values, linked both to the experience of modernization during the 1950s and 1960s and to the limits of cultural nationalism as promoted by a one-party state.Through an engrossing analysis of music and film, as well as fanzines, newspapers, government documents, company reports, and numerous interviews, Zolov shows how rock music culture became a volatile commodity force, whose production and consumption strategies were shaped by intellectuals, state agencies, transnational and local capital, musicians, and fans alike. More than a history of Mexican rock and roll, Zolov's study demonstrates the politicized nature of culture under authoritarianism, and offers a nuanced discussion of the effects of cultural imperialism that deepens our understanding of gender relations, social hierarchies, and the very meanings of national identity in a transnational era.   [brief]
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16. cover
Title: A courtship after marriage: sexuality and love in Mexican transnational families
Author: Hirsch, Jennifer S
Published: University of California Press,  2003
Subjects: Anthropology | American Studies | Cultural Anthropology | Latino Studies | Chicano Studies | Sociology | Gender Studies | Latin American Studies | Immigration | Sociology
Publisher's Description: From about seven children per woman in 1960, the fertility rate in Mexico has dropped to about 2.6. Such changes are part of a larger transformation explored in this book, a richly detailed ethnographic study of generational and migration-related redefinitions of gender, marriage, and sexuality in r . . . [more]
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17. cover
Title: William Mulholland and the rise of Los Angeles
Author: Mulholland, Catherine 1923-
Published: University of California Press,  2000
Subjects: History | California and the West | Californian and Western History | Autobiographies and Biographies
Publisher's Description: William Mulholland presided over the creation of a water system that forever changed the course of southern California's history. Mulholland, a self-taught engineer, was the chief architect of the Owens Valley Aqueduct - a project ranking in magnitude and daring with the Panama Canal - that brought water to semi-arid Los Angeles from the lush Owens Valley. The story of Los Angeles's quest for water is both famous and notorious: it has been the subject of the classic yet historically distorted movie Chinatown, as well as many other accounts. This first full-length biography of Mulholland challenges many of the prevailing versions of his life story and sheds new light on the history of Los Angeles and its relationship with its most prized resource: water. Catherine Mulholland, the engineer's granddaughter, provides insights into this story that family familiarity affords, and adds to our historical understanding with extensive primary research in sources such as Mulholland's recently uncovered office files, newspapers, and Department of Water and Power archives. She scrutinizes Mulholland's life - from his childhood in Ireland to his triumphant completion of the Owens Valley Aqueduct to the tragedy that ended his career. This vivid portrait of a rich chapter in the history of Los Angeles is enhanced with a generous selection of previously unpublished photographs. Los Angeles Times Best Nonfiction Book of 2000   [brief]
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18. cover
Title: Japanese American celebration and conflict: a history of ethnic identity and festival, 1934-1990
Author: Kurashige, Lon 1964-
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: History | American Studies | Asian American Studies | Californian and Western History | Immigration
Publisher's Description: Do racial minorities in the United States assimilate to American values and institutions, or do they retain ethnic ties and cultures? In exploring the Japanese American experience, Lon Kurashige recasts this tangled debate by examining what assimilation and ethnic retention have meant to a particular community over a long period of time. This is an inner history, in which the group identity of one of America's most noteworthy racial minorities takes shape. From the 1930s, when Japanese immigrants controlled sizable ethnic enclaves, to the tragic wartime internment and postwar decades punctuated by dramatic class mobility, racial protest, and the influx of economic investment from Japan, the story is fraught with conflict. The narrative centers on Nisei Week in Los Angeles, the largest annual Japanese celebration in the United States. The celebration is a critical site of political conflict, and the ways it has changed over the years reflect the ongoing competition over what it has meant to be Japanese American. Kurashige reveals, subtly and with attention to gender issues, the tensions that emerged at different moments, not only between those who emphasized Japanese ethnicity and those who stressed American orientation, but also between generations and classes in this complex community.   [brief]
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19. cover
Title: Proletarians of the North: a history of Mexican industrial workers in Detroit and the Midwest, 1917-1933
Author: Vargas, Zaragosa
Published: University of California Press,  1993
Subjects: History | United States History | Latino Studies | Chicano Studies
Publisher's Description: Between the end of World War I and the Great Depression, over 58,000 Mexicans journeyed to the Midwest in search of employment. Many found work in agriculture, but thousands more joined the growing ranks of the industrial proletariat. Throughout the northern Midwest, and especially in Detroit, Mexican workers entered steel mills, packing houses, and auto plants, becoming part of the modern American working class.Zaragosa Vargas's work focuses on this little-known feature in the history of Chicanos and American labor. In relating the experiences of Mexicans in workplace and neighborhood, and in showing the roles of Mexican women, the Catholic Church, and labor unions, Vargas enriches our knowledge of immigrant urban life. His is an important work that will be welcomed by historians of Chicano Studies and American labor.   [brief]
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20. cover
Title: The children of NAFTA: labor wars on the U.S./Mexico border
Author: Bacon, David 1948-
Published: University of California Press,  2004
Subjects: Sociology | American Studies | Labor Studies | Ethnic Studies | Latin American Studies | Immigration | Politics | Anthropology
Publisher's Description: Food, televisions, computer equipment, plumbing supplies, clothing. Much of the material foundation of our everyday lives is produced along the U.S./Mexico border in a world largely hidden from our view. Based on gripping firsthand accounts, this book investigates the impact of the North American Free Trade Agreement on those who labor in the agricultural fields and maquiladora factories on the border. Journalist David Bacon paints a powerful portrait of poverty, repression, and struggle, offering a devastating critique of NAFTA in the most pointed and in-depth examination of border workers published to date. Unlike journalists who have made brief excursions into strawberry fields and maquiladoras, Bacon has more than a decade's experience reporting on the ground at the border, and he has developed sustained relationships with scores of workers and organizers who have entrusted him with their stories. He describes harsh conditions of child labor in the Mexicali Valley, the deplorable housing outside factories in cities such as Tijuana, and corporate retaliation faced by union organizers. He finds that, despite the promises of its backers, NAFTA has locked in a harsh neoliberal economic policy that has swept away laws and protections that Mexican workers had established over decades. More than a showcase for NAFTA's victims, this book traces the emergence of a new social consciousness, telling how workers in Mexico, the United States, and Canada are now beginning to join together in a powerful new strategy of cross-border organizing as they search for economic and social justice.   [brief]
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