Abandoning their beloved land: The Politics of Bracero Migration in Mexico

Publication Date


Document Type



Abandoning Their Beloved Land offers an essential new history of the Bracero Program, a bilateral initiative that allowed Mexican men to work in the United States as seasonal contract farmworkers from 1942 to 1964. Using national and local archives in Mexico, historian Alberto García uncovers previously unexamined political factors that shaped the direction of the program, including how officials administered the bracero selection process and what motivated campesinos from central states to migrate. Notably, García's book reveals how and why the Mexican government's delegation of Bracero Program-related responsibilities, the powerful influence of conservative Catholic opposition groups in central Mexico, and the failures of the revolution's agrarian reform all profoundly influenced the program's administration and individuals' decisions to migrate as braceros.