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Available for purchase at Amazon and Stanford University Press!

Book with Stanford University Press

Series on Comparative Studies of Race and Ethnicity

Available for PURCHASE!


See blog:

Dismantling the Racial Paradise


Advance Praise for Race on the Move


“Joseph gives us a masterful, carefully executed, finely parsed, and absolutely first-rate sociological analysis of the intersection of transnationalism and race. Her work drives home the profoundly social and cultural determination of race in any given national context, both highlighting the tenacious power of perceived racial difference and shattering the idea that complex color gradations, group mixture, and hybridity inevitably undermine the significance of race: they don't."

—Lawrence D. Bobo, Harvard University 


Race on the Move takes a bold step in comparative studies of race in everyday life. Joseph’s nuanced ethnography is more than a comparison of two countries. She creatively shows how the migration of workers and intellectuals between Brazil and the United States reshapes both their personal racial experiences and the broader racial context of Brazil.”

—David Scott FitzGerald, UC San Diego


“A highly original analysis and major contribution to global and comparative studies of racial formation. Race on the Move  not only provides a compelling means of framing how migrants, and specifically Brazilian return migrants, negotiate race transnationally, but more importantly, offers a masterful examination of racial formation across borders.”

—G. Reginald Daniel, UC Santa Barbara

Me (on right) with Stanford University Press (SUP) Editor Jenny Gavacs at SUP Booth, 2015 American Sociological Association Meeting

Race on the Move takes readers on a journey from Brazil to the United States and back again to consider how migration between the two countries is changing Brazilians' understanding of race relations. Brazil once earned a global reputation as a racial paradise, and the United States is infamous for its overt social exclusion of nonwhites. Yet, given the growing Latino and multiracial populations in the United States, the use of quotas to address racial inequality in Brazil, and the flows of people between each country, contemporary race relations in each place are starting to resemble each other.


Joseph interviewed residents of Governador Valadares, Brazil's largest immigrant-sending city to the U.S., to ask how their immigrant experiences have transformed local racial understandings. Joseph identifies and examines a phenomenon—the transnational racial optic—through which migrants develop and ascribe social meaning to race in one country, incorporating conceptions of race from another. Analyzing the bi-directional exchange of racial ideals through the experiences of migrants, Race on the Move offers an innovative framework for understanding how race can be remade in immigrant-sending communities.


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