U. of London | Leave if You're Able: Deportation, Migration, and Survival in Honduras

Dec 9, 2021, 12:00 pm1:30 pm
Event Description
Latin American Anthropology Seminar Seriesat the School of Advanced Studies

12:00pm (New York) / 5:00pm (London)

Centre for Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Speaker: Amelia Frank-Vitale (Princeton University, USA)

In this talk, I argue that deportation and migration can be understood in terms of continuance, rather than rupture. Focusing on the experience of young Honduran men deported back to neighbourhoods with some of the highest rates of violence in the world, I show how deportation, intended to curtail mobility, provokes further movement as it becomes an extension across international boundaries of already existing exclusion. Drawing from long term ethnographic fieldwork in Honduras and extensive research on Central American transit migration through Mexico, I detail how a prior experience of circumscribed life chances is accumulated across time and space as people who are criminalised find themselves caught up in the evolving immigration enforcement regime that leaves them desperate to escape home yet unable to access refuge elsewhere. Through the stories of young men navigating survival on Honduras's urban margins, I depict life after, and between, multiple deportations, showing how, for young Honduran men, deportability - the condition of always being potentially at risk of removal - begins well before they decide to migrate.