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Mexifornia: A State of Becoming Hardcover – July 25, 2003

108 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

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*Starred Review* Classics professor Hanson is also, like generations of his family before him, a fruit farmer in California's central valley. He has employed immigrants, seen them flood his community during the last 30 years of mass flight from Mexico, and endured the crime associated with illegal immigrants. Hanson is immensely sympathetic to poor Mexicans, however, and the most powerful chapter here outlines the harried life of the illegal alien. But he hates to see the ordered culture in which he grew up drowned by an alien inundation whose undeserving beneficiaries are Mexico's kleptocratic rulers, for whom an open border is a safety valve expelling the potential for democratic change. The four solutions to the mess that Hanson enumerates include continuing de facto open borders but insisting on rapid acculturation; patrolling the border effectively and reducing legal immigration; imposing "sweeping restrictions on immigration" and ending Mexican chauvinism in the U.S.; and allowing present policies to make California increasingly mirror an unreformed Mexico. Hanson thinks that the U.S. "still need not do everything right" to prevent social collapse in the Southwest and that the totalitarian uniformity of valueless mass culture may soften that collapse. He also sees very clearly what has brought this crisis on: the American globalist ideology's lust for cheap labor and emphasis on "raw inclusiveness" instead of "standards and taste." Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved


"Hanson's 'Mexifornia' is that rare book that combines scholarship with personal experience to provide genuine insight into a complex issue." -- Linda Chavez, author of An Unlikely Conservative

"Victor Davis Hanson brings a lifetime of experience in California's Central Valley to this indictment of multiculturalism and mass immigration." -- Mark Krikorian, Center for Immigration Studies

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 150 pages
  • Publisher: Encounter Books; 1 edition (July 25, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1893554732
  • ISBN-13: 978-1893554733
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 0.7 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #343,824 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Victor Davis Hanson is Professor of Greek and Director of the Classics Program at California State University, Fresno. He is the author or editor of many books, including Who Killed Homer? The Demise of Classical Education and the Recovery of Greek Wisdom (with John Heath, Free Press, 1998), and The Soul of Battle (Free Press, 1999). In 1992 he was named the most outstanding undergraduate teacher of classics in the nation.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 89 people found the following review helpful By Peter Lacerda on September 2, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Victor Hanson combines scholarship (Professor at Cal State) with personal experience (life long resident and farmer in central CA. who has Mexican-American family and friends) to present a thoughtful look at the illegal Mexican immigration crisis. Hanson argues that the reason for this crisis is that both ends of the political spectrum have vested interests in continuing the unabated entry of illegal Mexicans. Republicans wish to placate business interests with cheap labor and Democrats hope for a future electoral base. Hanson further explains that this wave is not like the earlier waves of Polish, Jewish, or Italian immigration which was of a fixed duration and where the connection of the new immigrant to the Homeland was more thoroughly severed.
This book is well written and to the point (approx. 140 pages). I have also seen Victor Hanson on several political talk shows. He is well spoken and mild mannered which is a welcome relief from the cacophonous diatribe we too often get on cable news channels.
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168 of 190 people found the following review helpful By Sally Quick on October 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book shows how Mexico sends their poor to America to work, so they don't have to improve their own country, and how we use these people for cheap labor so that we can sell things for less. It's a deal made between the two countries. The trouble is, it's not what American citizens want. The "servants of the people", the representatives, are not listening to us, so it's always exciting to read something that really tells it like it is.
This book is written from the viewpoint of someone who actually lives with these Mexican immigrants. The rich people who want to use them in their businesses for cheap labor don't live with them; the liberal elites who push for them to get amnesty don't live with them. This guy lives among them, and knows the problems first hand, and as I suspected, there are many, and they're not pretty.
He writes very bluntly about the problems, but not without sympathy for the Mexican immigrants whose own country won't take care of them. With all the new books out and the discussions going on about legal and illegal immigration, and what the American people want, I'm hoping that these problems will be solved. This book is one of the best on the subject, because it is written from a viewpoint of personal experience.
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78 of 87 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 1, 2003
Format: Hardcover
As one who shares the author's ethnic,cultural and geographical heritage, I thought Hanson did a marvelous job of assessing California's major social issue, and one of America's primary problems. Like Hanson, I was born and reared in Fresno County, albeit some 25 miles from his native Selma. I can attest to the accuracy of his description of Selma and the Central Valley in the 1950's.
As a child, my associates included Hispanics; as a teenager working in the fig and peach orchards, my fellow workers were Hispanic. During my professional career, I have hired and promoted many Hispanics.
Hanson's Scandinavian ancestors (from Sweden) and mine (from Denmark) came to America legally and without speaking English, but they succeeded--without bilingual classes, welfare, government subsidies, or that phenomenon known as "affirmative action", which is being rapidly unmasked as nothing, more or less, than "reverse discrimination". Hanson deftly exposes the race industry as an amalgam of organizations and individuals who are quick to attack the Anglo for any slight, either real or imagined, but who, in the long run, seem not to do much for those whom they purport to serve.
As a criminologist, I am well aware of the violence committed by Hispanic Gangs, and the fact that those gangsters who do not wind up in the morgue soon become expensive inmates in our overcrowded prison system, costing taxpayers some $25k per year each. I am equally aware of the many outstanding Hispanic officers, prosecutors, and judges with whom I've worked.
Hanson has eloquently described the failure of our educational programs to work toward an assimilated America, as well as the failure of the "separatists" in the race industry.
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52 of 58 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 1, 2003
Format: Hardcover
All Americans - especially Californians - should read this book. Hanson takes a balanced look at a complex illegal immigration problem that will likely become worse before it gets better. The combination of hopelessness and despair with multiculturalism and a sense of racial and cultural entitlement (rather then the somewhat forced assimilation of other immigrant populations) is a dangerous combination as Hanson explains.
We should all beware of the professional political panderers on both the left and the right who helped to get us into this mess and seem to have no interest in anything other than garnering more political power.
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103 of 120 people found the following review helpful By Catherine A. McClarey on July 8, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I have read every book written by Hanson. From the hoplites of ancient Greece, the farming crisis of the 80's, the history of warfare and culture, the teaching of the classics and now this searching analysis of the debacle of our non-policy on immigration, I have been astonished at how skillfully this man writes and with what intelligence he cuts to the essence of whatever subject he addresses. In the present book Hanson turns his gaze to a subject he is personally familiar with: the transformation of his native California by massive illegal immigration from Mexico. Hanson is not anti-Mexican. He has several Mexican relatives, his daughters are dating Mexican-Americans and most of the people he grew up with are Mexican-American or Mexican. What Hanson is opposed to is our feckless non-policy on immigration which allows steady waves of illegals to flood our border states and does not give us time to allow us to assimilate the Mexican immigrants here. Hanson believes strongly that the vast majority of immigrants, given time and opportunity, will assimilate and become good citizens. However it is impossible for this to be accomplished unless we gain control of our southern border and curb most illegal immigration. A timely book on a major issue that both the Republican and Democrat parties steadfastly ignore.
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