Immigration and Diaspora

| July 1, 2002

Immigration and Diaspora

With this compilation of essays from various authors on the subject of 'borders,' John Brady and Robert Soza of Bad Subjects present a multifaceted take on the power of globalization both to connect and separate people. Within the expanse of these issues is a slow-to-change fear of 'others' despite the exposure of nations to each others' media, exports, and immigrants.

While globalization has increased the knowledge of other cultures, it hasn't completely succeeded in instilling acceptance of them. 'There is an interesting lag in the rush toward a borderless world,' say Brady and Soza. 'The message seems to be, 'We love your cheap labor, but we don't love you. Your bodies, especially the darker ones, need to stay where they are and keep on greasing the wheels of the new and improved borderless world.''

The writers detail such cultural difficulties as Australia's 'national attitude toward immigration,' America's wild consumption of Japanese 'kitsch,' the meaning of the term 'Gringo' in Brazil, and the use of stereotypes in American sitcoms.

The experiences of the authors in their travels and life in their respective cultures highlight the obstacles that we have yet to overcome in the effort to make globalization a more positive experience.

'Everyday on the news we hear argument after argument for or against the free-flow of capital, commodities, and ideas across the globe. The last several administrations in the U.S. have strongly favored free trade,' the editors write in the introduction. 'The one 'item' seemingly left behind in this world of unfettered movement is the human body.'
--Julie Madsen

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