Ann Kingsolver presents stories people have tole about NAFTA - young people and old, urban and rural, with differing political perspectives, occupations, and other markers of identity - that demonstrate their expectations and imaginations of the sweeping trade agreement. NAFTA. Kingsolver contends, both before and after its passage, became a catch-all in public discourse for tensions related to neoliberal policies and to economic and cultural processes of globalization. The storytellers in her book, from Mexico, Kentucky, and California, imagined the meaning and possible effects of regional integration on topics ranging from agriculture, to the stereotyping of workers, to national sovereignty and identity. NAFTA became invested with possibilities far beyond the scope of its literal provisions. Kingsolver analyzes the metaphorical meanings attributed to NAFTA, whether "a giant truck in your rear-view mirror"(in Ralph Nader's words) or a panacea for what they tell us about the changing relationship between national governments and their publics.
She finds that, rather than strengthening national authority, the passage of NAFTA led to intense public questioning and deep political divisions in both Mexico and the U.S.
Publisher: Lynne Rienner Publishers Inc