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Mexico

Illustration by Corey Brickley

Dixon

A star-smeared night, the usual briny and humid haze of the brush country in August, and Dixon was hauling twenty cases of stolen toys up from the Rio Grande valley. If the border patrol at the Sarita checkpoint asked, he’d claim a delivery mix-up.

Illustration by Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Travel Journals

Lawrence Ferlinghetti is well known as a poet and artist, publisher of fellow Beat writers, and cofounder of City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco. But his extensive notebooks in the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, cast [...]

Fishing for blue shark near Baja California.

An Ocean Apart

Can two forces threatening the sustainability of sharks—the fishermen of Mexico and consumers in China—help the fish survive?

Orozco throwing boomerangs at his Pennsylvania farm, 2013. (Oskar Landi)

Circling Back

Artist Gabriel Orozco doesn’t necessarily want to disappoint, nor does he want to fail, not in a literal sense. Rather, he wants to protect his right to be a beginner.

Are We Losing the War on Drugs?

Thousands of deaths in Mexico are chiefly the result of traffic in high-potency pot smuggled across the border with ruthless resolve. But when marijuana legalization came up as one of the most requested questions during a presidential town hall meeting early in Obama’s presidency, he laughed it off.

Saint Francisco de Paola floating across the water on his cloak. A saint of good works—charitas bonitas—he is carrying flames against his chest, a physical manifestation of his passion for the word of God.

The Stories of Strangers: Mexican Ex-Voto Paintings

While visiting a church in Guadalupe in 1917, David Alfaro Siquieros, the great muralist painter of the Mexican Revolution, found, “along with broken candelabras and other typical church adornments,” a “true mountain” of small paintings tossed carelessly on the floor. He picked one up. It was “made of paper . . . painted with colored pencils but especially interesting, perhaps more primitive than the others, almost as if executed by a child.” And, thinking he was doing nothing wrong, he took it. A priest, witnessing the scene, shouted, “Thief!”—and armed sacristans dragged him off to the station.

 

Juárez: City of Death

He is taking me on a tour of Juárez, but we won’t be visiting any museums or historic sights. We are going to tour the City of Death—Juárez’s slums, or colonias.