The Border Symbiosis

Along 1,936 Miles the Mix of Mexican and American Life Creates a "Third Country"

The blue jalopy creaks and groans, its bumper nearly scraping the roadway of the Good Neighbor Bridge, which spans the Rio Grande between El Paso and Ciudad Juarez. The driver has given 29 fellow Mexicans a free lift south because he can bring five cartons of cigarettes into Mexico for each passenger in his car. Next comes a pickup carrying six teenage Mexican girls, all trim in their red vests. They are returning to Juarez from their classes at a Roman Catholic girls school in El Paso. Behind them is Yolanda Rivas, who is heading home after an eight-hour shift in...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!