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Adventurers, Emissaries and Settlers: Ireland and Latin America
27-30 June 2007, National University of Ireland, Galway

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‘Ao Outro Lado/Al Otro Lado:’ Latin American Migration to Ireland, 1973-2006

Claire Healy (Immigrant Council of Ireland & NUI, Galway)

This paper will analyse the settlement of Latin Americans in the Republic of Ireland during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, with particular emphasis on Ireland’s decade of mass migration, 1996-2006. Forced and voluntary migrations of people from Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Peru and other Latin American countries will be considered in relation to the motivations for the move and the information and transport networks necessary, together with the legislative systems. The impact of these contemporary movements of people on Irish society and the Irish economy will be examined in relation to social and economic integration. The paper will also seek to explore perceptions of Ireland among new residents from Latin America.

The cultural consequences of these migrations will be investigated in reference to the proliferation of Latin American cultural events such as the Irish Latin American Film Festival, musicians such as the Mexican duo Rodrigo y Gabriela and associations such as the Latin America Solidarity Centre. As an exploration of an emerging theme, this paper seeks to stimulate further research, rather than provide definitive answers. This interpretation of contemporary migrations between Latin America and Ireland aims to re-focus and update our understanding of links between the two regions, while placing the movements in the broader context of international migration in the twenty-first century.

Online published: 24 April 2007
Edited: 07 May 2009

The Society for Irish Latin American Studies

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