Southern New Mexico is a land of harsh contrasts, sublime landscapes, and silenced stories. The region selected for this work, the Lower Rio Grande Valley, encompasses the counties of Socorro, Doña Ana, Sierra, Otero, and Luna. Since 1598, this land has experienced multiple waves of colonization, resulting in a multicultural community where Indigenous tribes, Spanish descendants, Mexican immigrants, and many others cohabitate. Today, around 336,000 New Mexicans call these five counties home, over a stretch of land that covers 24,212 square miles.
Southern New Mexico is defined by its people and landscapes. By analyzing the connection between the two, one can start to understand the issues the area faces today.