The Other Side of Immigration Discussion Questions

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

'The Other Side of Immigration' is a documentary film by director Roy Germano about the communities in Mexico that are left behind as their citizens flock to the United States. This asset offers discussion questions about this film.

The Other Side of Immigration

Roy Germano's The Other Side of Immigration is a 2009 documentary that examines immigration reform from the perspective of Mexican citizens whose towns have been decimated by abandonment as much of their community emigrates to the United States. Students will be exposed to another perspective of this complicated issue. The following questions support classroom discussions about this film.

Reasons for Migration

The questions in this section help students understand why so many citizens in rural Mexico migrate to the United States to work.

  • Describe the relationship between American citizens and Mexican citizens from the perspective of the Mexicans who are interviewed for this film. How is this similar and different from the point of view you held about immigration prior to watching this film?
  • What are the root causes of migration? Compare the economic impact of addressing the root causes to the economic impact of detaining and deporting undocumented people. What are some solutions you would propose?
  • Describe the demographic that is most likely to migrate to the United States. What expectations do people who migrate to the United States have? Where do these impressions originate? How is the reality different from their expectations? Connect this to a time when reality did not meet your expectations.
  • How has NAFTA impacted small farmers in Mexico? Which producers have benefited the most from NAFTA? Why is it difficult for Mexican farmers to compete with U.S. farmers? What options are available to farm workers in Mexico? What would you do if you were a Mexican farm worker?

Government Corruption and the Impact on Families

This section contains questions that explain how government corruption contributes to the root causes of migration and how migration affects families.

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