Who are the fruteros?

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A woman waits for customers by her fruit stand in Culver City. Many fruteros start work within days of arriving in the United States. Photo by Amy Ta/KCRW

When Professor Rocío Rosales began the six years of research for her book “Fruteros,” most of the fruit vendors she spoke with were young, undocumented men from a concentrated area of Mexico. A network exists starting in their hometowns, with promises of jobs and payment for passage into the United States. She describes the concept of an “ethnic cage,” where both the promise and pain of a community exist in events of deportation and unexpected catastrophe.

Rocío Rosales spent six years talking to fruit vendors around Los Angeles for her book, “Fruteros.” Photo courtesy of University of California Press
Credits

Host:
Evan Kleiman

Producers:
Joseph Stone, Laryl Garcia