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Chains Of Gold: Migratory Networks In Two Portuguese Immigrant Communities

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Chapter Summary

The 'chains of gold' displayed by migrants as proof of their success abroad that made such a long-lasting impression on António also serve as a metaphor of the intricate network of family and village connections that created and sustained particular 'chains of migration' from the Algarve to Argentina. The Portuguese communities of Comodoro Rivadavia and Villa Elisa are clear examples of this historical process. When the first Portuguese migrants arrived, Comodoro Rivadavia and Villa Elisa were towns-in-the-making, growing with the demographic, economic, and social contributions of migrants of diverse origins. The arrival of the Portuguese migrants coincided with the transformation of Villa Elisa and other areas of suburban La Plata into important centers of flower production. In the tradition of Algarvian labor migration, married migrants were expected to work abroad to save money; those who settled for long periods abroad were expected to reunite with their families.

Keywords: Algarvian labor migration; Comodoro Rivadavia; Portuguese immigrant communities; suburban La Plata; Villa Elisa



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