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Theory of the Border$
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Thomas Nail

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190618643

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190618643.001.0001

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The US-Mexico Wall

The US-Mexico Wall

(p.183) Chapter 8 The US-Mexico Wall
Theory of the Border

Thomas Nail

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the wall regime at the US-Mexico border. Unlike the fence regime, the wall regime at the US-Mexico border functions to centrifugally expel migrants outward, away from the center. Although the US-Mexico border has always been militarized and under the political power of a centralized government to some degree, it was not until the 1990s that we saw a massive expansion of centrifugal wall power at the border and in the “war on immigration.” In particular, the militarization of the border in the 1990s began as a largely urban force and expanded outward toward the periphery. This militarized wall regime is defined by three major kinds of political walls: offensive walls (federal enforcement operations), defensive walls (landing mats), and binding walls (transportation controls).

Keywords:   wall, war, military, immigration, operation, centrifugal, centralization, federal immigration

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