Memoir and Southwest

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The Haunting of the Mexican Border: A Woman's Journey

Kathryn Ferguson

Winner of the 2016 New Mexico-Arizona Book Award for Biography—Other

Second Place Winner of the 2016 International Latino Book Award for Best History Book

The Haunting of the Mexican Border
is a woman’s view of the violence and generosity of the border. For fifteen years beginning in the 1980s, Kathryn Ferguson made documentary films in Mexico’s Sierra Madre. As she traveled south, she encountered people who were traveling north, and she learned that the border at which they converged was deadly. Drawing on her own experiences, this book explores how US immigration policies erode the lives of ordinary citizens on both sides of the border.


A writer, filmmaker, and dancer, Kathryn Ferguson lives in Tucson, Arizona. She is a coauthor of the award-winning book Crossing with the Virgin: Stories from the Migrant Trail.


“Ferguson’s book is more than a memoir. It is an adventure story toughened by sore feet from walking and walking and walking steep, narrow paths.”


Albuquerque Journal

“Ferguson’s prose is transcendent, effortless, lifting off the page with the eye of a smart filmmaker who finds just enough detail to tell the imagination where to go but leaves off before laying on so much as to drown out that self-steering vision.”


Santa Fe Reporter

“(Ferguson’s) prose is marked by a deep kinetic awareness of how her physical presence as an American, a woman, and a traveler affects the migrants and indigenous tribal members she encounters during her filming expeditions.”



“A wise and humane account that draws on a lifetime of exploring the border country and pondering its meaning.”


Kirkus Reviews

“As a documentarian, Ferguson brings a journalistic approach to the material, providing context for the in-the-moment situations she describes, and the book itself provides useful context for the border as a whole.”


Foreword Reviews

The Haunting of the Mexican Border is a breathtaking work of art. Ferguson’s artistry shines in her prose, polished and raw in a perfect combination, and her ability to convey the beauty and power of humanity.”


Story Circle Book Reviews

“An important account of how the (Mexican borderlands) region continues to serve as a ‘haunting’ presence as well as a space whose history, stories, and art need to be more deeply appreciated and understood on the other side of the border.”


Southwestern American Literature

6 x 9 in. 240 pages 16 halftones, 1 map