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La Liga de Las Americas

Program agenda for: Forced repatriation of Mexican workers by the United States, Main Detroit Public Library, 5201 Woodward Avenue, Explorers Room


Friday, Oct. 20, 2006

10:00am Breakfast & Registration

11:00 AM Introduction

Elena Herrada, Director

Fronteras Norteñas

11:10 AM Welcome

Mark Patrick, Special Collections Director

The Burton Archives

Detroit Pubic Library

11:20 AM Keynote Address:

Cuantos Regresaron?

Dr. Fernando Alaniz, Professor

History Department

El Colegio de San Luis

San  Luis Potosi, México


12:30 Noon LUNCH


1:30 PM Legislative Workshop

The study of the systemic repatriation of Mexican Nationals in the early 1900s has triggered a number of initiatives at the grassroots, academic and legislative levels throughout the country and Mexico. Several elected officials at the state and federal levels have joined this movement by introducing legislature with the purpose of educating the general public on this issue through public venues. The panelists of this workshop will explore different ways by which public servants and offices in Michigan may further the education about Los Repatriados locally.

Moderator; José Cuello, PhD

Chicano Boricua Studies, Wayne State University


Henry Sánchez, Commissioner

Michigan Spanish Speaking Commission

Hon. Vicente Sánchez, Mexican Consul

Diana Rivera, César Chávez Collection, MSU Library Services


3:00 BREAK

3:15 PM Oral history WORKSHOP

It is estimated that hundreds of thousands of U.S. Mexican individuals and their families may have been affected by the Repatriation Program. Viewed as a time sensitive area of history mostly in the hands of the repatriados’ descendants, this workshop aims at empowering individuals with skills to record or document their own family stories. Facilitators will explain research techniques, interviewing skills, and electronic recording methods.

Moderator; Elena Herrada, Director

Fronteras Norteñas

Julio César Guerrero, MSW, MA

Office of Racial and Ethnic Student Affairs

Michigan State University

Jerry García, Asst. Professor, History Department, Michigan State University



Botanitas-  Music by José Riojas


SATURDAY, October 21, 2006


Professor Teresa Meléndez, Director, Chicano Studies Program, Michigan State University.

10:45 AM Research WORKSHOP

In an effort to continue with the academic research of the Repatriados as a field of study many scholars have written on the subject. This is a timely opportunity for curriculum development in secondary and higher education. This workshop will allow local scholars to present their research work depicting several angles of analysis of the repatriation phenomena. The collection of papers will be edited in an anthology to be released in 2007.

Moderator; Julie Herrada, Curator, Labadie Collection, University of Michigan Library



The depatriation of Chicanos in the 1930s:

The deterritorialization of La Raza

Dr. Jorge Chinea, Director, Chicano Boricua Studies, Wayne State University.


The more things remain the same, the more things change:

Mexican immigrants and American nativists 1936 and 2006

Dr. José Cuello, Professor, History Department, Chicano Boricua Studies

Wayne State University



Dr. Teresa Meléndez, Director, Chicano Studies Program

Michigan State University


From La Raza Cósmica to the Mexican Problem:  Scientific Racism, Immigration Policy, and the Deportation of Ethnic Mexicans

in the United States, 1900-1930s

Dr. Jerry García, Asst. professor, History Department

Michigan State University


12:30 PM LUNCH


1:30 PM Final resolutions WORKSHOP

Los Repatriados project was originally born as a grassroots initiative from Detroit descendants of repatriated families. Although the issue has reached other levels of interest, the project rests in the hands of the community to further the public promotion of the issue into the public agenda. This workshop will focus on developing community based strategies based on the information resulting from the Segundo Encuentro Conference

Moderator: Julio César Guerrero, MSW, MA, Office of Racial and Ethnic Student Affairs

Michigan State University


3:00 – 5:00 PM DIA TOUR
Diego Rivera is known as a Mexican social realist muralist whose famous monumental frescoes  found in public buildings of France, México, and the United States, depict revolutionary themes.

In June of 1932 Rivera was assigned by the Founders Society of The Detroit Institute of Arts to paint a large fresco. The project, funded by Edsel Ford was entitled Detroit Industry.

The art work that occupies an entire gallery of the Detroit Institute of the Arts portrays the production of the body of the 1932 Ford V-8 at the Company's Rouge Plant in Dearborn.

The murals were dedicated in March of 1933 amidst some controversy, ranging from accusations of Communist content and sacrilegious portrayals to the unsuitability of industrial subject matter for a museum setting. Rivera drew upon Cubism, pre-Columbian imagery, and his own interest in the machine aesthetic to create this remarkable series of frescos as a tribute to industrial advancement and the workers of Detroit.

Guide: Roberto Muñoz, Fronteras Norteñas.






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