Since the mid-1990s, the U.S. federal government has relied on a border enforcement strategy known as “Prevention Through Deterrence.” Using various security infrastructure and techniques of surveillance, this strategy funnels undocumented migrants towards remote and rugged terrain such as the Sonoran Desert of Arizona with the hope that mountains ranges, extreme temperatures, and other “natural” obstacles will deter people from unauthorized entry. Hundreds of people perish annually while undertaking this dangerous activity.
Since 2009, the Undocumented Migration Project has used a combination of forensic, archaeological, and ethnographic approaches to understand the various forms of violence that characterize the social process of clandestine migration. In this presentation, Mr. De Leon will focus on what happens to the bodies of migrants who die in the desert and the devastating and long-lasting trauma this causes to the families and loved ones of those who have perished.
This program is in collaboration with Illinois State University. For ages 18 and up.