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Race, Phenotype, and National Identity in Brazil and the United States.” 2019. In The Oxford Handbook of the Sociology of the Body and Embodiment. (Editors Kate Mason and Natalie Bolero). New York: Oxford University Press.

“A (Black) American Trapped in a ('Non-Black') Brazilian Body: Reflections on Navigating Multiple Identities in International Fieldwork.” 2016. In Race and the Politics of Knowledge Production: Diaspora and Black Transnational Scholarship in the USA and Brazil. (Eds.Gladys Mitchell-Walthour and Elizabeth Hordge-Freeman) Palgrave Press. 


BOOK: Race on the Move: Brazilian Migrants and the Global Reconstruction of Race. Stanford University Press Series of Comparative Studies of Race and Ethnicity, 2015. Click here for more.


“‘U.S. Blacks are Beautiful but Brazilian Blacks are not Racist’: Brazilian Return Migrants’ Perceptions of U.S. and Brazilian Blacks.”Pp. 151-171 in Re-Positioning Race: Prophetic Research in a Post-Racial Obama Age. (Eds. Sandra Barnes, Zandria Robinson, and Earl Wright II.)  Albany: SUNY Press, 2014.


“How Does Racial Democracy Exist in Brazil?: Perceptions from Brazilians in Governador Valadares, Minas Gerais.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 36:1524-1543, 2013.


“Latino, Hispanic, or Brazilian: Considerations for Brazilian Immigrants’ Racial Classification in the U.S..” Pp. 275-292 in Migrant Marginality: A Transnational Perspective. (Eds., Philip Kretsedemas, Jorge Capetillo-Ponce, and Glenn Jacobs) New York: Routledge Press, 2013.


“‘My Life Was Filled with Constant Anxiety’: Anti-Immigrant

Discrimination, Undocumented Status, and their Mental Health Implications for Brazilian Immigrants.” Race and Social Problems 3:170-181, 2011.


This project was conducted in Governador Valadares (GV), Brazil's largest immigrant-sending city to the US. The city is also unique in that many of its residents permanently return after living in the U.S. to start businesses or buy a house or car using money earned in the US. This process is referred to as "Fazer A America" or "Making America." While much research has used the U.S. as the focal point for exploring migrants' experiences, I sought to examine how U.S. migration has transformed people in and places like GV where people have been on the move between both countries for over 50 years. 


My primary focus has been on the "racial" implications of this transnational migration in GV. In other words, how does migrating to the U.S. and then returning to Brazil alter individuals' perceptions of themselves and others as racial beings, and their views of race relations in the US and Brazil? I also explore if U.S. racial ideals travel across national borders via these migrants on the move back to Brazil. My book Race on the Move (with Stanford University Press) and some publications discuss these very issues.


I am now using this data to explore the following implications of transnational migration: (1) physical and mental health;  

(2) family structure and parenting from afar; (3) social and cultural transformation of life in GV; (4) relationships between migrants and non-migrants; and (5) migrants' readaptation to GV post-migration.


My interviews with return migrants in GV about their experiences living primarily as racialized undocumented immigrants in the U.S. became the inspiration for my Immigrants' Health and Healthcare Access project.


Funding was provided by the Fulbright Student Grant Program, Ford Foundation, National Science Foundation, and Social Science Research Council, and Stony Brook University.

Making America in Brazil: Implications of Brazil-U.S. Migration

Condominiums in GV Built with U.S. Remittances

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