caroline eaton tracey

caroline.e.tracey at gmail dot com

Stopping the Old Rio Grande
New York Review of Books Online, 11 January 2024

“For two hundred years Zapata was a community stitched to the Rio Grande. Residents drew on its water for their household needs, planned their summer crop plantings around its seasonal floods, and crossed the bridge over it to buy groceries and see family on the other side, in the Mexican town of Guerrero.

The buildings around the town’s central plaza—a two-story courthouse, the Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, and the primary school that doubled as a movie theater—were built from sandstone hand-cut from the banks of the Rio Grande. The town’s dirt roads would shift during flood season, following new paths that rain carved toward the river during storms. ‘I would go and sit on the riverbank, just listening to the water gurgling and watching it flow. It mesmerized me,’ Hildegardo Flores, now eighty, told me about his childhood in Zapata. ‘I would come home and build my own river, a little canal between our two orange trees.’

All that changed in 1950, when the governments of Mexico and the US began construction on the Falcon Dam downstream.”

Appearance on the Cognitive Dissidents podcast:

reporting on the Arizona border wall, november 2022 (photo: Eliseu Cavalcante)

with Ellen Waterston and guest judge Raquel Gutiérrez at the 2022 Waterston Desert Writing Prize awards ceremony
Caroline Eaton Tracey writes about the environment, migration, and the arts in the US Southwest, Mexico, and their borderlands. She speaks and works in English, Spanish, and Russian. Her first book, SALT LAKES, will be published by W.W. Norton.

Caroline’s reporting appears in the New Yorker, n+1, New York Review of Books, High Country News, and elsewhere, as well as in Spanish in Mexico’s Nexos

In 2022 she was awarded the Waterston Prize for Desert Writing and in 2023 she received Columbia University’s Ira A. Lipman Fellowship in Journalism and Human and Civil Rights and a Silvers Foundation Work-in-Progress grant.

Caroline holds a PhD in Geography from the University of California, Berkeley. She lives with her wife, Mexican architect and sculptor Mariana GJP, between Tucson, Arizona and Mexico City.

She is represented by Bridget Matzie of Aevitas Creative Management.
Caroline Eaton Tracey escribe sobre el medioambiente, la migración, el arte y la literatura en México, el Suroeste de Estados Unidos y su frontera. Habla ingles, español y ruso. Su primer libro, SALT LAKES, será publicado bajo el sello de la editorial W.W. Norton.

Sus artículos aparecen en The New Yorker, n+1, New York Review of Books y High Country News entre otros lugares. En español escribe frecuentemente para la revista Nexos.

En 2022 ganó el Premio Waterston por Escritura del Desierto y en 2023 recibió la beca Ira A. Lipman de periodismo de derechos humanos y civiles de Columbia University y una beca de la Fundación Silvers.

Caroline es Doctora en Geografía de la Universidad de California–Berkeley. Vive con su esposa, la arquitecta y escultora mexicana Mariana GJP, entre Tucson, Arizona y la Ciudad de México.

La representa Bridget Matzie de la agencia literaria Aevitas Creative Management.