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Migration and DisruptionsToward a Unifying Theory of Ancient and Contemporary Migrations$
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Brenda J. Baker and Takeyuki Tsuda

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780813060804

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813060804.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 17 September 2021

“Disruption,” Use Wear, and Migrant Habitus in the Sonoran Desert

“Disruption,” Use Wear, and Migrant Habitus in the Sonoran Desert

(p.145) 7 “Disruption,” Use Wear, and Migrant Habitus in the Sonoran Desert
Migration and Disruptions

Jason De León

Cameron Gokee

Anna Forringer-Beal

University Press of Florida

Since the 1990s, unauthorized migrants attempting to cross the Sonoran Desert of Arizona have relied on a unique set of material culture to evade Border Patrol, as well as prevent and treat injuries incurred en route. Drawing on data from the Undocumented Migration Project, a long-term ethnographic and archaeological study of border crossings between Sonora, Mexico, and Arizona, this chapter explores some of the physical disruptions that migrants experience individually and collectively during attempts to cross the desert; 2) highlights how the crossing process has created a context-specific form of habitus; and 3) illustrates how the techniques people use to cross the desert are often reflected materially through use-wear patterns and discarded objects. The chapter concludes with a discussion of how objects left in the desert are not “trash” but complex artifacts that can be studied to improve our understanding of the routinized forms of suffering that many migrants experience.

Keywords:   Arizona, Border, Use-wear patterns, Archaeology of the contemporary, Mexico, Habitus, Material culture

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