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An Investigation Of Surface Assemblages Related To Contemporary Immigration In Southern Arizona

Author(s): mario castillo

Year: 2015

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For the last twenty years an archaeological record of immigration has taken shape in Arizona’s wilderness. This material record results from millions of undocumented men, women and children who have entered the U.S. without authorization by walking across the Sonoran Desert of southern Arizona. Along the way these people eat, rest, and deposit a variety of objects (e.g., water bottles, clothes, personal effects) at ad-hoc resting areas known as migrant sites. These surface assemblages are affected by formation processes which include deposition of materials by migrants, removal of items by non-migrants and physical disturbance by wildlife and desert environment. In this paper, I present a field method for investigating formation processes of migrant site assemblages using contemporary survey instruments, digital photography and Geographic Information Systems. The results indicate that physical (and ephemeral) process of contemporary immigration in Arizona are actively erased, appropriated, and re-imagined by human and non-human actors. 

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An Investigation Of Surface Assemblages Related To Contemporary Immigration In Southern Arizona. mario castillo. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Seattle, Washington. 2015 ( tDAR id: 433802)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 225

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America