Amelia Frank-Vitale

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Michigan, Ann Arbor, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9457

Approve Date

April 25, 2017

Project Title

Frank-Vitale, Amelia M., U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Saber Vivir: Deportation, Migration, and 'Knowing How to Live' in Honduras,' supervised by Dr. Jason De Leon

AMELIA M. FRANK-VITALE, then a graduate student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, received a grant in April 2017 to aid research on “Saber Vivir: Deportation, Migration, and ‘Knowing How to Live’ in Honduras,” supervised by Dr. Jason De Leon. The grantee came to Honduras to study life after deportation in one of the world’s most violent countries. While carefully navigating the landscape of criminal organizations, twelve months were spent conducting ethnographic work among deportees, their family members, people planning to leave Honduras, and people in those same neighborhoods who have not migrated. During the research period, the caravan of mostly Honduran migrants began. The grantee joined the caravan for a few weeks, and this was allowed to know migrants, deportees, and their families across multiple points in the migration journey. This flashpoint has brought to light many of the dynamics at the heart of this research, adding an important layer to the political context within which the study takes place. Through hundreds of hours of participant observation, the grantee learned the uncharted geography of the Sula Valley. The study outlines the intricacies of how people can and cannot move around, what spaces and forms of movement are neutral and accessible and what barriers and obstacles exist for different segments of the population. Focusing on strategies for survival, it draw links between the expansive, furtive, uncharted, lengthy movement of migration and the closed-in, delimited, cloistered stasis that many Hondurans see as the best way to survive within the country.


Frank-Vitale, Amelia, et al.  2020. The Generation of the Coup: Honduran Youth at Risk and of Risk. The Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology. Published online.