Queer Sanctuary on the Borderlands
This piece explores the multiple Latina/o/x and Queer, social-cultural sanctuaries that exist within the El Paso-Ciudad Juárez borderplex. In so doing, the essay follows the author's move from the conservative Texas Panhandle to the U.S.-Mexico border, where they sought solace in a community in-between two cultures, two languages, and two nations. On the border, the author found a vibrant cultural hub for both Latina/o/x/s and the LGBTQ community. That is, the border is not simply a place at the peripheries of cultural worlds. It is a place of cultural making, including the making of a borderlands culture of sanctuary through which the author had the opportunity to see and explore their new home. Within that narrative, the essay surveys the social makeup along with the political and social history of Texas, the U.S.-Mexico border, the U.S. South, and these regions' various physical and cultural meeting points.