Philosophy Faculty Publications and Presentations

Peons and Progressives: Race and Boosterism in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, 1904–1941

Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2018


This article focuses on the discourse of race produced by boosters in the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) of Texas; it builds on previous research showing the effects of booster materials on the conduct and perception of immigrants. Today, the LRGV continues to impact issues and debates about race in the United States; as such, it is imperative to offer a critical eye to the discourses and mythologies that frame race in the region. A discursive analysis of race in booster materials shows that race was not just an isolated element but one that deeply shaped almost every aspect of the construcion of place—from land, to beauty, to policing.


Original published version available at

Publication Title

Western Historical Quarterly