September 11, 2001 marked the beginning of a new era of security imperatives for many countries. The border between Canada and the United States suddenly emerged from relative obscurity to become a focus of constant attention by media, federal and state/provincial governments on both sides of the boundary, and the public at large. This book provides a comprehensive examination of the Canada-USA border in its 21st century form, placing it within the context of border and borderlands theory, globalization and the changing geopolitical dialogue. It argues that this border has been reinvented as a 'state of the art', technology-steeped crossing system, while the image of the border has been engineered to appear consistent with the 'friendly' border of the past. It shows how a border can evolve to a heightened level of security and yet continue to function well, sustaining the massive flow of trade. It argues whether, in doing so, the US-Canada border offers a model for future borderlands. Although this model is still evolving and still aspires toward better management practices, the template may prove useful, not only for North America, but also in conflict border zones as well as the meshed border regions of the EU, Africa's artificial line boundaries and other global situations.
'This is truly an extraordinary book for all North Americans (Canadians, Americans, and Mexicans). The book is a must read for residents of the US-Canadian borderlands who desire to understand what is happening in their backyard; for students who wish to have in their hands more than a mere primer on this vast border and look into the future of it; and for scholars who wish to see how border theory can be used to understand what is happening to all of us as we move between two contradictory phenomena today - debordering and rebordering - and how these affect us in our day-to-day lives. Konrad and Nicol have written the most comprehensive volume on the transformation of the American-Canadian border published so far, one from whose reading we can all discern much of what is ahead in the common destiny of our continent.' American Review of Canadian Studies 'This excellent book fills a huge void in the emerging research on the Canada-US border. Utilizing culture as the lens to understand 'rebordering' in North America, Konrad and Nicol show how border culture, the product of the long history of relations and interactions among people inhabiting northern North America, is malleable over time and adjusts to facilitate the changes in security, political and economic relations between the two countries. ' Donald K. Alper, Western Washington University, USA 'Richly footnoted and referenced, this scholarly work effects a masterly survey and analysis of a pressing problem in the modern world.' Choice 'Beyond Walls…is a significant contribution not only to the study of North American borders and borderlands, but also in the way it links existing borderland theory with numerous case studies, and in suggesting new ways of examining border issues at a global level… the book is a solid contribution to understanding the role of borders in twenty-first century North America, and belongs in the library of anyone with a deep interest in Canadian-American relations over
Contents: Foreword; Preface; The Canada-United States borderlands in the 21st century; Boundaries, borders and borderlands: Borderlands theory in the era of globalization; A retrospective on the Canada-US borderlands; Borderland regions and transnational communities; Trade in an era of heightened security: sustaining the prosperity partnership; Homeland security and emergency preparedness; Passport compliance; Environment; Arctic boundaries and Northern borderlands; Borderlands culture; Index.