New Course on U.S.-Mexican Border Encourages Critical Thinking on Divisive Issues

New Brunswick, N.J. (Sept. 18, 2019) – What shifted over the past 30 years that changed perceptions of the U.S.-Mexican border? Are current policies working? Will barring illegal immigration decrease crime and unemployment? 

These are some of the issues that Camilla Townsend, a distinguished professor of history at Rutgers-New Brunswick, will discuss in a new fall course, Wars, Wayfarers, and the Wall: A History of the U.S.-Mexican Border.

“I am not insisting that the students draw a certain and definitive conclusion to these questions, but I do want them to look at real evidence and think seriously about it before they make political decisions.” said Townsend who wants to challenge students to understand the border’s tangled history and find research-based solutions for ongoing, apparently intractable immigration issues.

Townsend said the 2016 presidential election, in which America’s political divides seemed to reach a breaking point, inspired her to create a course that would encourage critical thinking about hotly contested issues, like the border wall and the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that will allow asylum-seekers at the U.S. Mexico border to be turned away.

Read the full story on Rutgers Today.


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