Caroline Eaton Tracey

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

California, Berkeley, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9932

Approve Date

October 24, 2019

Project Title

Tracey, Caroline (California, Berkeley, U. of) ""The Soul Will Fly Home of its Own Accord": Building a Transnational Infrastructure to Address Migrant Death"

CAROLINE TRACEY, then a graduate student at University of California, Berkeley, California, was awarded funding in October 2019 to aid research on ”The Soul Will Fly Home of its Own Accord’: Building a Transnational Infrastructure to Address Migrant Death,’ supervised by Dr. Nathan Sayre. Long a migrant-sending country, in recent years Mexico has become one of return. Between 2010 and 2018, 2.6 million Mexicans left the United States, 55% by deportation and 45% by return. In response, a body of deportation scholarship has emerged and, mostly in Mexico, limited scholarship on return migration. Yet both literatures have largely overlooked women deportees and returnees, arguing instead that deportation is a gendered form of surplus labor control. This dissertation, an ethnographic account of women and gender-non-conforming deportee/returnee activism, challenges the idea that non-male deportees are ancillary to deportation and return migration as phenomena and objects of academic study, arguing that these return migrants’ cultural production, community-building, and intimate knowledge of the bureaucracies of the US and Mexico has improved the circumstances of long-term emplacement for all return migrants and their families.