Date of Award

January 2009

Degree Type

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Justice Studies

First Advisor

Peter B. Kraska

Department Affiliation

Justice Studies

Second Advisor

Gary W. Potter

Department Affiliation

Justice Studies

Third Advisor

Kenneth D. Tunnell

Department Affiliation

Justice Studies


Why would the Clinton Administration pursue two completely contradictory policies, Operation Hold the Line and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFT A), and how did the Clinton Administration and the Border Patrol discuss this contradiction. This thesis will argue that these statements fulfilled a propaganda function in the obfuscation of this contradiction. This thesis fills a gap in existing literature regarding propaganda and criminal justice by locating the source of propaganda in the state, and presenting a new analytical through which to investigate propaganda in criminal justice agencies. The methodological approach used to test the hypothesis was an instrumental qualitative case study of Operation Hold the Line. And a narrative analysis of the statements in speeches and press conferences of the Clinton Administration and Border Patrol chiefs from 1993-1996 that dealt directly with Operation Hold the Line. This analysis will investigate whether or not these statements display conformity or nonconformity to the proposed propaganda model for criminal justice agencies. The implications of these findings for future critical criminological research are discussed in the conclusion section.