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7 An Empire in the Making: American Colonial Interests South of the Border

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Chapter Summary

This chapter sketches the historical origins of the United States (U.S.)-Mexican relations that has culminated in the construction of what is dubbed as "the Great Wall of Mexico". It begins with a brief account of the newly constructed and highly militarized wall/fence along the U.S.-Mexico border. The chapter then argues that an appreciation of the rationale for its construction is rooted in the two nations' long and troubled history of political and economic relations mainly in the context of American colonial-imperial interests. It also demonstrates that by the end of the 20th century the two nations' political economies have become completely interdependent if not fully integrated. The chapter concludes by providing a conceptual framework to make the case that the U.S.-Mexican border line does not demarcate each nation's territorial "edge", but rather it now sits right in the midst of two unified political economies and populations.

Keywords: American colonial-imperial interests; Great Wall of Mexico; militarized wall; political economies; United States (U.S.)-Mexico border



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