Homelands: Four Friends, Two Countries, and the Fate of the Great Mexican-American Migration (Paperback)
"Homelands helps us to see ourselves in each other, and in so doing it gets at the genius of a country that has always aspired to be one out of many.” -Beto O'Rourke
A sweeping story of the great Mexican migration from the late 1980s to today, told by prizewinning journalist and immigration expert Alfredo Corchado
When Alfredo Corchado moved to Philadelphia in 1987, he felt as if he was the only Mexican in the city. But in a restaurant called Tequilas, he connected with two other Mexican men and one Mexican American, all feeling similarly isolated. Over the next three decades, the four friends continued to meet, coming together over their shared Mexican roots and their love of tequila. One was a radical activist, another a restaurant/tequila entrepreneur, the third a lawyer/politician. Alfredo himself was a young reporter for the Wall Street Journal.
Homelands merges the political and the personal, telling the story of the last great Mexican migration through the eyes of four friends at a time when the Mexican population in the United States swelled from 700,000 people during the 1970s to more than 35 million people today. It is the narrative of the United States in a painful economic and political transition.
As we move into a divisive, nativist new era of immigration politics, Homelands is a must-read to understand the past and future of the immigrant story in the United States, and the role of Mexicans in shaping America's history. A deeply moving book full of colorful characters searching for home, it is essential reading.
About the Author
Alfredo Corchado is the Mexico Border correspondent for the Dallas Morning News and author of Midnight in Mexico. He is a Nieman, Lannan, USMEX, Woodrow Wilson, and Rockefeller fellow and the winner of the Maria Moors Cabot Prize and Elijah Parish Lovejoy Award for courage in journalism. Corchado lives in Mexico City but calls the border home. @ajcorchado
“Corchado's casual, friendly prose flies under the raging policy debates of the moment to engage us in incredibly personal stories of friendship and family. Before you realize it, he has defeated your cynicism and disarmed your political reflexes to bring you into a lively conversation on the nature of citizenship and culture in the most human of terms. Homelands helps us to see ourselves in each other, and in so doing it gets at the genius of a country that has always aspired to be one out of many.” —Beto O'Rourke
“With the country at odds over immigration, now is the perfect time to learn more about the issue. Journalist Alfredo Corchado provides an opportunity in his latest book, Homelands.” —Bustle, naming HOMELANDS one of The 17 Best Nonfiction Books Coming Out In June 2018
“Corchado's book offers much-needed nuance and serves as a sober reminder that today's immigration challenges are the result of decades of misguided American policy. . . amid yet another immigration crackdown that will undoubtedly carry its own consequences for decades to come, it would behoove policymakers to pick up Corchado's book and take pause.” —Texas Observer, naming HOMELANDS one of "Our 10 Favorite Texas Books of 2018"
“Economic needs, shared history, culture and intimate ties all seem likely to outlast the most recent wave of anti-immigrant hostility. 'Can we live without one another, Mexico and the United States? Can we even imagine that?' Why, this book asks, would we even want to?” —starred review, Shelf Awareness
“In “Homelands” Corchado tells two stories at once - that of his life as a bicultural, naturalized American reporter and the larger saga of a migration surge that occurred at the same time . . . his book explains broad trends with engaging ease.” —Washington Post
“In Homelands [Corchado] recounts his experiences and those of three friends--altogether, three Mexicans and an American of Mexican descent--as they grapple with having two countries to call home. . . It eloquently chronicles the effects of the North American Free-Trade Agreement between Mexico, America and Canada, the militarisation of the border after the attacks of September 11th 2001 and Mr Trump's victory.” —The Economist
“In addition to providing historical context for the current debate on immigration, this book is a timely and personal meditation on the concept of 'migrant' in the United States.” —Publishers Weekly
“Vividly and entertainingly rendered . . . Homelands performs a valuable service. Politics, after all, isn't the only way that a disenfranchised and vilified community can counteract the stereotypes, misunderstandings, and even stupidities imposed by others. It can also do so if its expatriate sons and daughters, who have traveled far and succeeded, despite the odds, return to help. These voices, like Corchado's, will make the voyage easier for those who will surely follow.” —Texas Monthly
“A mix of memoir and deep research into various Mexican and American political immigration issues . . . An affecting, timely book.” —Kirkus Reviews
“The latest from the Dallas Morning News' award-winning borderland correspondent is a breezy, expansive narrative that traces the Great Mexican Migration of the second half of the twentieth century.” —Booklist
“A sensitive, thought-provoking self-portrait of Mexican Americans who, wherever they go, call the borderlands home.” —Library Journal
“Corchado reports from across borders with the advantage of seeing the world with multiple perspectives. In the end, it's those who have the least who inspire Corchado the most. No matter where we call home, this book is an inspiration.” —Sandra Cisneros, author of HOUSE ON MANGO STREET
“Corchado achieves a unique meld of vivid, deeply personal storytelling, meticulous reporting, and clear, concise explanations of the impact of both political and economic policies.” —Zócalo Public Square, Favorite Nonfiction of the Year list
“This personal, moving tale illuminates the very heart of the polarizing immigration debate that is roiling America today.” —David Axelrod, Director at University of Chicago Institute of Politics, Former Senior Adviser to Barack Obama
“Alfredo Corchado's soul is fondly and firmly rooted in both the U.S. and his native Mexico. In tracing the life journeys of himself and three friends, he provides a window to the migrating millions helping to transform North America in the 21st Century. Homelands is an evocative and essential tale for our times.” —Dudley Althaus, Mexico Correspondant, The Wall Street Journal
“This book comes at a pivotal time in American history, when millions are demanding for a wall to separate the United States from Mexico and to deport illegal immigrants. . . . I definitely suggest this read to help understand how Mexican descendants help to shape America as a whole.” —Best in Philly
“Invigorating self-analysis and spot-on social critique . . . Homelands is not only a book that is right on time, it is book that is long overdue.” —Latino Magazine
“Homelands is an eloquently gripping testimonio, both a memoir of the author's struggles to develop a successful binational identity and a critique of our nation's shifting, fractured immigration policies.” —San Antonio Express News
“Alfredo Corchado's moving and deeply personal story traces through his own journey and those of three friends, the odyssey of generations of Mexican immigrants. Homelands is a masterful tale--both heartfelt and informative. Pitch perfect.” —Jose de Cordoba, Latin America Correspondent, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
“In this multigenerational coming-of-age story, Alfredo Corchado offers a unique exploration of what it means to be Mexican and American, to be Mexican in America, to be American in Mexico. A welcome and timely tonic about immigrants and identity.” —Miriam Pawel, author of THE BROWNS OF CALIFORNIA