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Un libro sobre sueños que continúan, tras deportación y retorno a un país desconocido. Para leer todo en español, haz click aquí.
About the Book
This book is a collective testimonio of life in Mexico after growing up in the United States. These are the stories of being de aquí y de allá (from here and from there), even though feeling like you can belong in the United States and in Mexico has never been easy. In word and image, these young people, between the ages of 10 and 32, share what it is like to be rejected in one home only to feel homeless in another. They also describe their surprises, their accomplishments, and their dreams that continue in spite of the immigration system that divides them from their childhood memories, their friends, and their family.
The book will include about twenty stories, written in the preferred language of the contributor (English/Spanish/Spanglish) and then translated. A full-page color portrait will accompany each testimonio, along with several photos of the places that represent the daily, local experience of returning. We have already received moving and important contributions from Tijuana, Monterrey, Merida, Mexico City, Puebla, Hidalgo, State of Mexico, Guerrero, and Guadalajara. We will use some of the funds to travel to these locations, as well as others where we have contacts (Sonora, Zacatecas, Michoacoan, Veracruz, Oaxaca, and Chiapas).
In addition to these travel costs, the bulk of our $30,000 budget pays for our talented professional designers Gabriela Varela + David Kimura, a professional translator, printing in Mexico of 1500 books with Offset Santiago. By and large, the publishing industry prints in China to save production costs. Supporting the local economy, this book will be 100% made in Mexico. The book will be printed in an accessible format of 6x8 inches, softcover, with color photos on uncoated paper.
Who are l@s Otr@s Dreamers?
Los Otros Dreamers include young people who have been deported by the U.S. immigration system, as well as those who made the difficult decision to return to Mexico after coming up against obstacles in the States, often upon graduation from high school or college. Many might have been eligible for the potential Dream Act reforms in the U.S. which would allow a pathway to citizenship for young immigrants who grew up there with no criminal record and who can go to college or join the military. The current immigration reform bills might include limited possibilities for deported DREAMers, but most will likely not benefit from the upcoming reforms.
This book also embraces the fact that there are many different dreams and many ways to get there. A rockier path to adulthood may include former gang involvement, minor criminal records, and prison sentences that do not necessarily lead to a life of violence and crime. Many of the young people who experience deportation as exile from the only home they have ever known came of age as adolescents under the 1996 immigration law. This law criminalized relatively minor mistakes so that they lead to automatic deportation without appeal. Upon return to Mexico, many men and women start to re-build their lives via employment, education, and family in the face of great obstacles, isolation, and despair.
Each of these stories contributes to a vital 21st century witness of the challenges as well as the resilience of this bilingual, bicultural generation. Many of them are asking whether the American Dream that motivated so many of their parents might become the Mexican Dream now.
In particular, we are collaborating with two inspiring groups of young people in Mexico. Based in Monterrey with contacts throughout both countries, Dream in Mexico, A.C. is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting undocumented young people get accepted to a Mexican university, whether before making the return or after deportation/return. Los Otros Dreamers, with whom the book shares its name, are a group in Mexico City who are organizing around the right to equal access to education, especially the challenges they face in order to re-validate their U.S.-based educations within the Mexican education system, Many find themselves still "undocumented" upon return to their country of birth! Both organizations are helping to invite people to tell their stories in the book.
In the News // En la prensa
NUEVO: "Los Otros Dreamers", Letras Explícitas, 17 de junio, Español/Spanish.
NUEVO: "Estudiantes deportados de EU preparan libro sobre retorno a México", Animal Político, by Yonathan Dorfzaun, June 14th, Español/Spanish.
NEW: "Los Otros DREAMers: A Book of Young People's Deportation and Return to Mexico", Colorlines Magazine, by Seth Freed Wessler, June 13th, English/Inglés.
NEW: "Graduate Student in Mexico Spearheading Kickstarter Campaign to Tell Stories of Deported Dreamers", Latina Lista Newswire, May 24th, English/Inglés.
"Especial: La Reversa del Sueño Americano", MundoFox, May 2013, Español/Spanish. (video)
"DREAMers in Mexico: Former Immigrants Struggle in their Home Country", Politic365.com / Huffington Post, by Tania Lara, April 2013, Inglés/English.
"Undocumented migrants back in Mexico hope to someday return to US", The Guardian, by Amanda Holpuch, February 2013, Inglés/English.
"Los 'homies' del Call Center", Milenio, by Julio I. Godínez Hernández. January 2013, Español/Spanish.
"Difícil vida para estudiantes deportados", Noticiero Telemundo, MSN Latino, July 2012, Español/Spanish. (video)
“Deportados al Call Center” Nexos en línea, by Marco Antonio Castillo, December 2012, Español/Spanish. (in collaboration with Jill Anderson)
Pre-order your special edition of this book today so that the stories by these brave and talented young people are heard on both sides of the border!
Risks and challenges
In chronological order, the first challenge we face is connecting with the diversity of deported and returning young people across Mexico and supporting them in their desire to participate. Nin will travel to every region of the country to take photographs, and Jill will travel to targeted destinations where interviews may be more accessible than written submissions and/or where a writing workshop might benefit a group of youth. Jill has years of experience supporting beginning writers in various forums. The internet and social media connections have already helped to address the geographical distances, and Nin's flexible schedule will allow her to travel intensively over the next several months.
The process of design, editing, printing, and distributing a book of this scope and caliber is not an amateur one. Nin's experience and contacts in Mexico City's publishing industry will allow us to ensure quality, meet the calendar deadlines, stay within the budget, and complete the publication process efficiently.
Finally, the bi-national distribution of the book is both a challenge and an invitation. Through the Kickstarter pre-orders, the book will be distributed directly to readers. We also have plans to donate books to organizations actively working with return migrants.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (40 days)