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Fronteras: Undocumented and formerly undocumented migrants document themselves in ‘Somewhere We Are Human’

The stories of undocumented migrants and their unique experiences after the journey to the United States often go untold.

Many stay silent amid a rise in anti-immigrant rhetoric, which has led to violent or deadly encounters.

Those stories that are highlighted are often told by others.

A 2022 anthology amplifies the voices of 41 migrants, refugees, and Dreamers as they share their own experiences through essays, poems, and artworks.

Somewhere We Are Human: Authentic Voices on Migration, Survival, and New Beginnings is a collection of stories about the joy, sorrow, and struggles of the immigration experience.

The book was co-edited by Reyna Grande and Sonia Guiñansaca, who were undocumented immigrants themselves.

Guiñansaca — founder of House of Alegría, a publishing press for queer, trans and nonbinary migrant artists — said it was important to collect a variety of voices when putting together the anthology.

“We brought in stories of folks who had been deported, stories of people who decided to leave (of) their own will,” she said. “We also brought in stories about folks in relationship with their families … seeking asylum.”

Grande — a writer and memoirist — said while it was difficult to narrow down the stories that would be included in the anthology, it highlights immigration stories from all over the world.

“It was just so beautiful to see all these experiences and voices,” she said. “Even though the immigration experience is so universal, each piece in here is very unique and the voice of each contributor is unique.”

Norma Martinez can be reached at norma@tpr.org and on Twitter at @NormDog1