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Presentation Will Explore Mexican Migration Issues

INDEPENDENCE -- The state's history of Mexican migration and the complex issues related to it will be examined in an Oregon Chatauqua event at the Heritage Museum on Saturday, Jan. 10.

INDEPENDENCE -- The state's history of Mexican migration and the complex issues related to it will be examined in an Oregon Chatauqua event at the Heritage Museum on Saturday, Jan. 10.

Erlinda Gonzales-Berry will present "Sojourners, Settlers, and New Immigrants: Mexicanos in Oregon" at 1:30 p.m.

Gonzales-Berry is a professor emeritus at Oregon State University, and was that institution's chairwoman of the Ethnic Studies Department for a decade before retiring in December 2007.

Before that, she was a professor of Spanish and Chicano/Latino Culture and Literatures at the University of New Mexico, and chairwoman of the Department of Spanish and Portugues

Gonzales-Berry will explore the 75-year history of migration and settlement of Mexicans in Oregon, highlighting sustained practices of community building, struggles for integration, and contributions to the cultural and economic landscape of the state.

The number of Latinos residing in Oregon has increased dramatically in the last decade, leading one scholar to speak of "the browning of Oregon."

Gonzales-Berry will draw on her own extensive fieldwork, newspaper articles, archival photographs, and government agency reports to provide a sort of community portrait.

Part of her discussion will focus on the relation between globalization and current patterns of worldwide migration, and, according to Gonzales-Berry, "the inherent contradiction ... of borderless nations for economic enterprises, and borders as law-enforcement and protection barriers for national identity and sovereignty."

The Jan. 10 program in Independence is one of several offered by the Oregon Humanities Council, an independent, nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities that is dedicated to the belief that knowledge and ideas are fundamental to the health of our communities

The presentation is free to the public.

For more information: 503-838-4989.

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