Date of Award

5-1-2016

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Communication Studies

First Advisor

Walker, Rebecca

Abstract

This thesis explores the storytelling strategies utilized by Mexican migrant workers and their families. Through the use of autoethnography, I examine how these storytelling strategies are created and how they function. Juxtaposing formal and informal interviews of my immediate family with my own personal narrative, I identify five Mexican storytelling archetypes: la llorona, el machismo, el güero, el patrón, and el indígeno. Using a methodological framework provided Kristin Langellier and Eric Peterson, I analyze how these storytelling strategies are used to sustain cultural norms and create family identity. Finally, I discuss a performance I created titled “30 Days: A Story of Confinement” that staged conceptualizations of these storytelling strategies.

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