Strategies of Documentation among Kichwa Transnational Migrants

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Over the last 40 years, Kichwa-Otavalo migration has shifted from textile commerce across the borders of neighboring countries to transnational migration as indigenous musicians and artisans. This indigenous population, originally from the Province of Imbabura, Ecuador, travels around the world using strategies and documents learned through generations of travelers who have encountered different migration regimes and who have expanded their commercial networks across several continents. This chapter explores migration strategies and attitudes towards different forms of documentation the indigenous merchants and musicians have developed throughout the years and argues that a pragmatic understanding and use of documents have emerged from various contexts of migration. Kichwa-Otavalo migrants use there shifting positionality within specific contexts to engage state actors who cannot really “read” them in a bureaucratic sense.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPaper Trails
Subtitle of host publicationMigrants, Documents, and Legal Insecurity
EditorsSarah B. Horton, Josiah Heyman
Place of PublicationEstados Unidos
PublisherDuke University Press
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781478012092
ISBN (Print)9781478008453, 9781478007944
StatePublished - Jul 2020

Publication series

NameGlobal Insecurities
PublisherDuke University Press

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Social Sciences


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