Title Illegal Encounters
Subtitle The Effect of Detention and Deportation on Young People
Author Deborah A. Boehm, Susan J. Terrio
ISBN 9781479861071
List price GBP 22.99
Price outside India Available on Request
Original price
Binding Paperback
No of pages 256
Book size 152 x 228 mm
Publishing year 2019
Original publisher New York University Press (Combined Academic Publishers)
Published in India by .
Exclusive distributors Viva Books Private Limited
Sales territory India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, .
Status New Arrival
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“Deborah A. Boehm and Susan J. Terrio have assembled a powerful and heart-wrenching collection of essays that elucidate the myriad ways young people’s lives are shaped, and often devastated, by the immigration laws and enforcement practices of the United States. This volume brings together the voices of leading immigration scholars, practitioners, and people directly affected by our punitive immigration laws. This assemblage of gripping narratives will be a valuable read for anyone wishing to know more about how immigration laws affect youth, and consequently, the future of this nation. Those who teach courses on immigration, race, ethnicity, children and youth, as well as justice will find this volume to be a compelling addition to their course.”

—Tanya Golash-Boza, University of California, Merced


Illegal Encounters examines the experiences of young migrants, bringing critical social, cultural, and legal perspectives to issues as current as today’s headlines. The collection of scholars is superb, and includes authors who themselves migrated to the U.S. as children. Rarely does an edited volume result in such integrated and coherent chapters to produce an instant classic that challenges what we think we know about the migration experience. Illegal Encounters is a must read for anyone interested in how young people manage the perilous journey across borders and the U.S. legal system.”

—Leo R. Chavez, author of The Latino Threat: Constructing Immigrants, Citizens, and the Nation


The impact of the U.S. immigration and legal systems on children and youth

In the United States, millions of children are undocumented migrants or have family members who came to the country without authorization. The unique challenges with which these children and youth must cope demand special attention. Illegal Encounters considers illegality, deportability, and deportation in the lives of young people—those who migrate as well as those who are affected by the migration of others.

A primary focus of the volume is to understand how children and youth encounter, move through, or are outside of a range of legal processes, including border enforcement, immigration detention, federal custody, courts, and state processes of categorization. Even if young people do not directly interact with state immigration systems—because they are U.S. citizens or have avoided detention—they are nonetheless deeply affected by the reach of the government in its many forms.

Contributors privilege the voices and everyday experiences of immigrant children and youth themselves. By combining different perspectives from advocates, service providers, attorneys, researchers, and young immigrants, the volume presents rich accounts that can contribute to informed debates and policy reforms.

Illegal Encounters sheds light on the unique ways in which policies, laws, and legal categories shape so much of daily life for young immigrants. The book makes visible the burdens, hopes, and potential of a population of young people and their families who have been largely hidden from public view and are currently under siege, following their movement through complicated immigration systems and institutions in the United States.


Introduction: Encounters with Illegality

Deborah A. Boehm and Susan J. Terrio

Part I. In: Confronting Enforcement, Detention, and Deportation

Chapter 1. Risky Border Crossings (Jason De León)

Chapter 2. Social Citizens and Their Right to Belong (Tobin Hansen)

Chapter 3. Illegality and Children’s Power in Families (Joanna Dreby)

Reflections: Entering Multiple Systems (José Ortiz-Rosales and Kristen Jackson)

Reflections: Surviving Detention (Williams Guevara Martínez)

Part II. Through: Navigating Laws and Legal Systems

Chapter 4. The Post-1996 Immigrant Underclass (Susan Bibler Coutin)

Chapter 5. Youth on Their Own (Nina Rabin and Cecilia Menjívar)

Chapter 6. Immigration Courts (Susan J. Terrio)

Reflections: Representing Unaccompanied Children (Wendy Young and Megan McKenna)

Reflections: Judging Children (Dana Leigh Marks)

Part III. Out: Responding to “Illegality”

Chapter 7. Youth Negotiate Deportation (Lauren Heidbrink)

Chapter 8. Youth Activism (Carolina Valdivia)

Chapter 9. Dreaming across Borders (Deborah A. Boehm)

Reflections: Looking Forward (Abel Núñez and Rachel Gittinger)

Reflections: Still Dreaming (Margarita Salas-Crespo)

Commentary: The Best Mankind Has to Give? (Jacqueline Bhabha)




About the Editors

About the Contributors


About the Editors:

Deborah A. Boehm is Professor of Anthropology and Women’s Studies/Gender, Race, and Identity at the University of Nevada, Reno, and the author of Intimate Migrations: Gender, Family, and Illegality among Transnational Mexicans (NYU Press) and Returned: Going and Coming in an Age of Deportation.

Susan J. Terrio is Professor of Anthropology and French Studies at Georgetown University and the author of Whose Child am I?: Unaccompanied, Undocumented Children in U.S. Immigration Custody, Judging Mohammed: Juvenile Delinquency, Immigration and Exclusion at the Paris Palace of Justice and Crafting the Culture and History of French Chocolate.

Target Audience:

A must read for anyone interested in how young people manage the perilous journey across borders and the U.S. legal system. Those who teach courses on immigration, race, ethnicity, children and youth, as well as justice will find this volume to be a compelling addition to their course.”

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