The "veiled violence" of capitalist agriculture
MetadataShow full item record
Type of Work46 pages
SubjectsMigrant workers -- United States
Migrant agricultural labor
Migrant agricultural labor - Policies
Imagine you are a Mexican undocumented migrant trying to cross the Arizona desert in 122-degree heat. The hot sun blares on your back as you constantly scan your surroundings as you walk, trying to avoid snakes, dehydration, and guards holding guns. Your money is hidden, wrapped tightly around your body but you know you still risk being robbed. You have a long journey ahead of you: once you arrive in the United States, there is no guarantee how you will find your wcy to the farm where you will work, relying on the help of many, jeopardizing deportation at every step. If you arrive, you will work long hours for minimum pay, in potentially hazardous conditions of pesticide exposure, lifting heavy equipment with few safety precautions, and housing crowded with hundreds of other workers. You will have little if any access to health care and no access to government assistance despite paying sales and even perhaps income taxes. You might move from farm to farm, as the seasons change to find new work, or you might return to your home, to see your family for a brief time and to prepare to do the process all over again. You are chancing everything, including your life, to do this. What structures drive this movement? This thesis seeks to understand the impact of industrial agriculture and policy on migrant labor by examining the social, economic, and political issues facing migrant workers in the United States agricultural industry. It also seeks to take the analysis one step further by exploring the role democracy can play in imagining a better future.
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