Tapestries: Interwoven voices of local and global identities


I look to border responses of North American countries as refugees and migrants move across them to argue that border responses racialize the foreign other in receiving countries. I pay particular attention to the South-South migration of Nicaraguans into Costa Rica, of importance now due to the increased displacement of Nicaraguans across this border as the Nicaraguan government continues its harsh crackdown on political dissenters in the country. Through critical whiteness studies, the tactics used to racialize Nicaraguans as an other in Costa Rica are interrogated. By connecting these methods of racialization and border responses, I examine how racial and geopolitical borders influence one another, coming to the conclusion that they actively support and construct each other.

Author Biography

Theodore Bennett Twidwell (he/him/his) is a graduating senior at Macalester College from Nevada City, California. He will be graduating with a double major in American Studies and Educational Studies. Academically, Theo’s interests include border studies, liberationary education models, critical whiteness studies, and localized histories. As a first-generation college student, Theo hopes to work in educational advocacy in the future to help support others in the same way so many have supported him to and through graduation, all of whom (family, teachers, professors, friends) he thanks profusely.


Acknowledgements: To my parents and sister, who made college and education a reality. Y'all are always my home.

Dedication: This paper is dedicated to all the incredible people I met in Nicaragua and Costa Rica who are continuing the fight against repressive governments and exclusionary bordered violence.