Aaron Bobrow-Strain

Cindy Seip

Aaron Bobrow-Strain is a professor of politics at Whitman College, where he teaches courses dealing with food, immigration, and the U.S.-Mexico border. His writing has appeared in BelieverThe Chronicle of Higher Education ReviewSalon, and Gastronomica. He is the author of White Bread: A Social History of the Store-Bought Loaf and Intimate Enemies: Landowners, Power, and Violence in Chiapas. The Death and Life of Aida Hernandez: A Border Story (Farrar, Straus and Giroux) reveals the human consequences of militarizing what was once a more forgiving border. When Aida Hernandez was born in 1987 in Agua Prieta, Mexico, the nearby U.S. border was little more than a worn-down fence. Eight years later, Aida’s mother took her and her siblings to live in Douglas, Arizona. Undocumented, Aida fought to make her way. Following a misstep that led to her deportation, Aida found herself in a Mexican city marked by violence, in a country that was not hers. To get back to the United States and reunite with her son, she embarked on a harrowing journey. Taking us into detention centers, immigration courts, and the inner lives of Aida and other daring characters Aaron Bobrow-Strain exposes a violently unequal America. He also shows us that the heroes of our current immigration wars are less likely to be perfect paragons of virtue than complex, flawed human beings who deserve justice and empathy all the same.