Our Border Life

Two popular tropes dominate our conversations about the U.S.-Mexico border: the region as an unsophisticated poor backwater or a dangerous no-man’s land overrun by “illegals” and drug lords–or both. These too-common narratives could not be further from the truth.

Borderzine’s bilingual cross-border reporting project germinated from a necessity to provide color, context and a counter-narrative about a culturally diverse binational 2000-mile zone of 20 million people that is a lightning rod for anti-immigrant sentiment and hate-filled political rhetoric.

Reported and written by journalism students from the U.S. and Mexico, the project presents a nuanced reality of the region through storytelling, photography, podcasting and an ebook called True Border: 100 Questions and Answers about the U.S.-Mexico Frontera. Supported by an ONA grant, we collaborated with content experts, local media, educators, academics, professionals, businesspersons and ordinary residents of the borderlands. Two classes interviewed residents, talked to experts and researched the 10 chapters of the ebook.

Borderzine’s journalism faculty, with support from experienced media professionals, edited the material, oversaw content production and collaborated with KTEP, the NPR affiliate in El Paso, KERA Dallas public radio, and the nonprofit La Verdad website in Ciudad Juarez.

We hope you agree “Our Border Life” meets its primary purpose to inform and shed light on one of the most misunderstood, maligned and underappreciated regions of the nation.  

Our Border Life is made up of “Our Stories” and “Our Voices.” Scroll below to see each section.