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NO101-Sept 12, 2012.docx

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Wilfrid Laurier University
North American Studies
Bina Mehta

NO101- September 12, 2012 Key Questions  What are the differences and similarities between Canada, the USA and Mexico?  Are these three countries currently (ie since NAFTA) converging or diverging? -see reading Convergence and Divergence for more ideas on the idea of continentalism vs nation-state being the strongest ties  What are the forces (economic, geopolitical, cultural) that encourage or hinder that convergence? -the advancement of the USA and Canada while Mexico remains underdeveloped compared to the global North Convergence and Divergence -January 1, 1994 NAFTA- a new era in continental cooperation? -Zapatistas launched an attack on the Mexican government in Chiapas (same day) highlighting racial and economic inequality in Mexico -What has changed? What challenges remain? Subcomandante Marcos -The government has tried to portray Mexico as a first world country...But behind this picture is the real Mexico, the Mexico millions of Indians who live in extreme poverty *...+ We’ve shown that in Chiapas, the Mexican government and a handful of businesses extract all the wealth... Nations and Regions -Economics, cultural regional difference within nations -How does this factor into our discussion? -Economic benefits of trade unevenly distributed (eg Mexico, North vs South) -Regions whose economic interests, histories cross national boundaries: can they be forces of integration?
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