Fortnightly logo

The United States and Mexico: Between Partnership and Conflict

The relationship between the United States and its neighbor to the south, Mexico, is a constantly evolving one. Until the mid-1980s a simple rule of thumb was used to identify Mexico's foreign policy: it was whatever U.S. foreign policy was not. Since then, however, the Mexican government has taken the initiative to restructure their economy as well as their relations with the United States and U.S.-Mexican relations have changed dramatically. Today, relations between the two nations have become more institutionalized as many regular procedures now exist to address and solve disputes. Starting in the late 1990s and continuing to the present, the Mexican government has sought to increase cooperation with the United States in even the most conflict-ridden aspects of bilateral relations: drug trafficking and migration. In many other areas of human concern- the demographic composition of the United States, trade investment, jobs, border cities, etc.- Mexico has become one of the most important countries in the world to the United States.

Professor Jorge Dominguez will address the ever-shifting nature of this complex bilateral relationship. Dominguez is director of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University and a former president of the Latin American Studies Association. He has received an award for his teaching and is the author of numerous books on Mexico and Latin America, including a recent volume with Rafael Fernandez de Castro titled The United States and Mexico: Between Partnership and Conflict (2001). Professor Dominguez is also the coinvestigator of a major NSF grant analyzing public opinion and the 2000 Mexican presidential election. His lecture is jointly sponsored by the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies and the Athenaeum.