Master of Arts
Department or Program
Martin Anderson, PhD
Christian Dean, PhD
This thesis explores America’s treatment of the Mexican worker in the United States between 1942 and 1964, the years in which an international guest worker agreement between the United States and Mexico informally known as the Bracero Program was in place, and one in which heightened fears of illegal immigration resulted in Operation Wetback, one of the largest deportation programs in U.S. history. The Mexican worker’s experience during the bracero era brings to light core traits of American national identity, such as xenophobia and ethnocentrism, that today obstruct the United States’ ability to resolve its currently conflicted relationship with the Mexican worker.
Brinkman, Mark, "From Working Arm to Wetback: The Mexican Worker and American National Identity, 1942-1964" (2009). Graduate Master's Theses, Capstones, and Culminating Projects. 67.