Living, Learning, and Languaging Across Borders : Students Between the US and Mexico book cover
1st Edition

Living, Learning, and Languaging Across Borders
Students Between the US and Mexico

ISBN 9780367355463
Published September 30, 2021 by Routledge
196 Pages 54 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Addressing the roles of education, language, and identity in cyclical migration, this book highlights the voices and experiences of transborder students in Mexico who were born or raised in the US. The stories develop a portrait of the lived realities, joys, and challenges that young people face across elementary, secondary, and tertiary levels.

The book not only discusses migration and education policies and pedagogies grounded in the fluid lives of these young people, but its photography also presents their experiences in a visual dimension that words alone cannot capture. This in-depth, multimodal study examines the interplay of language, power, and schooling as they affect students and their families to provide insights for educators to develop meaningful pedagogies that are responsive to students’ border crossing experiences.

Living, Learning, and Languaging Across Borders is a vital resource for pre- and in-service teachers, teacher educators, graduate students and scholars in bilingual and multilingual education, literacy and language policy, and immigration and education in the US, Mexico, and beyond. It offers important insights into the complex landscapes transborder students navigate, and considers policy and pedagogy implications that reject problematic assumptions and humanize approaches to the education and migration experiences of transborder students.

Table of Contents


Author and Photographer Biographies



Part I: Overview of Cyclical Migration

Chapter 1: Return Migration in Context: Policies, Demographics and Terminology

Chapter 2: Transborder Students and Families

Chapter 3: Family Return to Mexico

Part II: Issues Impacting Students

Chapter 4: Shifting National Identities and Immigration Statuses

Chapter 5: Language Learning, Unlearning, and Relearning

Chapter 6: Two Countries, One Education 

Part III: Lessons Learned

Chapter 7: Policy and Pedagogy Implications

Epilogue: Where Are They Now?

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Tatyana Kleyn is Associate Professor and Director of the Bilingual Education and TESOL Programs at The City College of New York, USA.

Tim Porter is a photographer and journalist who has worked for a variety of newspapers as a reporter and editor.


"Through both words and images, Kleyn and Porter vividly bring to life the day to day challenges, dreams and aspirations of nine transnational students—those we call ‘the students we share.’ This is a compelling book for anyone interested in addressing the needs of millions of students caught between two countries and two schooling systems. I learned a great deal from this book."   

--Patricia Gandara, University of California, Los Angeles, USA

"The faces, words, ideas and feelings of transborder youth who have returned to Mexico from the U.S. come alive in Kleyn and Porter’s innovative use of language and images. This book not only offers a theoretical account of return migration, an understudied topic, but it also weaves stories and photographs in ways that let us imagine the world the youth inhabit. Kleyn’s descriptive language in this respectful account of her ethnographic work in Oaxaca is unique."

--Ofelia García, Professor Emerita, The Graduate Center, City University of New York, USA

"The relationship between written word and photographic image can create a third, dimensional experience. Living, Learning, and Languaging Across Borders uses that dance in a powerful way to help us all better understand the complex and deeply human conversation surrounding migration. Tatyana Kleyn’s scholarship and accompanying photographs by Tim Porter bring the stories of these brave transborder students and their families to life."

--Lynn Johnson, National Geographic Photographer & Fellow

"The volume gets both more humane and more humanities-oriented with the inclusion of poetry, artwork, and Porter’s spare and respectful black and white photographs. […] The photographic images and text here create an opportunity to broaden readers’ perspectives towards the varied lived realities of transborder youth and in Kleyn’s case show a continuation of her use of multiple media to promote understanding."

--From the foreword by Edmund ‘Ted’ Hamann, University of Nebraska--Lincoln, USA; Víctor Zúñiga, Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico; and Juan Sánchez García, Escuela Normal Miguel F. Martínez, Monterrey, Mexico