The Affective Creation of ‘Home’: Patron Saint Fiesta Videos in the Transnational Setting of Mexico/USA
The actors manage feelings in an intentional, media-based way (doing affects) in contexts of marked social inequality and exclusion: the criminalization of labour migration from Mexico to the US makes involvement in the homeland’s socio-political processes all the more complicated and integration into US state institutions impossible. The guiding argument is that people engage in media such as the patron saint fiesta videos as to experience affective resonances of feeling at ‘home’, as well as the dissonances of sensing alienation from diverse ‘homes’ – even across a vast distance. These dynamics stimulate a heterogeneous group of actors in both countries to actively construct “Yalálag,” for example. This group encompasses several generations of migrants with diverse legal statuses in Los Angeles, including children born in the US, returnees from the US in the Mexican village of Yalálag and people who do not come from Yalálag. From interaction via Facebook pages and YouTube video clips a networked public has emerged as a further place of belonging and a ‘home’ in itself. The subproject makes an innovative theoretical and methodological contribution to a subject that until now has received scant attention from researchers: the affective dimension of migration and transnational community-building based on media practices and ‘home’-making.