FES | Federación Española de Sociología

XII Congreso de la FES

Travellers of the Caribbean: Positioning Brasília in the Haitian migration trails

GT 25 Sociología de las Migraciones

Gustavo Dias (Goldsmiths College)
Priscilla Menezes de Oliveira Pri (Universidade de Brasília)


Sesión de comunicaciones orales Franja 4 : Retos migratorios
Responsable(s): Trinidad Lourdes Vicente Torrado (Universidad de Deusto)
Tipo de sesión: Sesión de comunicaciones orales
Día: viernes, 1 de julio de 2016
Hora: 16:00 a 18:00
Lugar: 009
Mesa 2: Migraciones de tránsito y rutas

In the last decade, Brazil has received a large number of Haitian migrants. According to scholars, these migrants are motivated to emigrate from Haiti by better job opportunities as well as good life conditions in some of the large Brazilian cities (Chaves 2008; Fernandes, Castro e Ribeiro 2014). Nonetheless, Brasilia reveals another face of this massive migration. Based on a qualitative research conducted with 40 Haitians living in the Brazilian capital, this paper examines the presence of Haitians in Brazil beyond a unidirectional movement, linking Haiti to Brazil. The research explores how Haitians and their historical practice of living on the move have enabled them to deal with border controls and circulate through several countries in South America, including Brazil. This presentation, therefore, argues that the migration to the Brazilian capital can neither be understood as a linear movement - with a clear beginning and end point to the journey - characterized by an established Haiti-Brasilia connection nor defined as a place where these migrants attempt to settle down. It rather shows that the recent presence of Brasilia in the mobility performed by Haitians has to be understood through a vast dynamic meshwork of places, people and information throughout the American continent. In order to develop such argument, the presentation examines the two main Haitian migration trails observed in the fieldwork – the Pacific Corridor and the Air Corridor –, into which Brasilia is inserted.

Palabras clave: mobility, migrant trails, South America