Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33)

Tyrell P-M (2015)
Comparative American Studies 13(1-2): 16-30.

Journal Article | Published | English

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Abstract
This essay describes a border between nation-states as an economic resource for a borderlands local economy, an exploitation that not only has an impact on the borderland itself, but also on the nations along either side of the border. The borderland of Detroit-Windsor in the prohibition era (1920-33) provides a vivid example of such use of a border. This example highlights how legal and, to a lesser extent, cultural asymmetries between both sides of the border were used to generate numerous very profitable and innovative businesses. First, the legal foundations of smuggling, which developed during the prohibition era in the Detroit-Windsor borderland, are described and analysed. Second, the impact of the Detroit-Windsor Funnel narrative about this smuggling and the illegal alcohol business in the US is highlighted. Third, 'border vice' in the Detroit-Windsor area and its use of legal and cultural differences on both sides of the border is analysed. In this context both the use of asymmetries and spatial proximity to the border are described as the principles of a borderland-specific economy.
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Tyrell P-M. Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33). Comparative American Studies. 2015;13(1-2):16-30.
Tyrell, P. - M. (2015). Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33). Comparative American Studies, 13(1-2), 16-30.
Tyrell, P. - M. (2015). Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33). Comparative American Studies 13, 16-30.
Tyrell, P.-M., 2015. Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33). Comparative American Studies, 13(1-2), p 16-30.
P.-M. Tyrell, “Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33)”, Comparative American Studies, vol. 13, 2015, pp. 16-30.
Tyrell, P.-M.: Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33). Comparative American Studies. 13, 16-30 (2015).
Tyrell, Paul-Matthias. “Utilizing a Border as a Local Economic Resource: The Example of the Prohibition-Era Detroit-Windsor Borderland (1920-33)”. Comparative American Studies 13.1-2 (2015): 16-30.
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