The Utopian/Dystopian American Dream: Immigration and Labor in Latina/o Science Fiction

Inspections at the U.S.-Mexico Border

Don Chipote’s humiliation at the border makes clear that the U.S.’s utopian and eugenic vision is to ensure that the country does not allow any undesirables. Don Chipote experiences these dystopian moments when he reaches the border and is asked to strip down and shower, “After taking off his clothes, he was naked as a jaybird, putting his grubby little paws in a box of powdered disinfectant, then hitting the showers” (35). Interestingly, Don Chipote enjoys showering because he believes it is the only requirement for him to enter the U.S. In Francisco E. Balderama and Raymond Rodriguez’s Decade of Betrayal: Mexican Repatriation in the 1930s, they explain that men, women and children waited long hours at the border just to be seen, and could still be turned away. They were also detained for hours without drinking fountains or bathrooms, and were forced to shower in public bathrooms and have their clothing disinfected (11). Gutiérrez explains that the rationale behind this treatment, specifically surrounded health concerns because, “immigrants were blamed for spreading contagious diseases throughout the land” (56). 


This page has paths:

Contents of this path: