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Sidney Mintz’s field journal for The People of Puerto Rico, published in 1956, is a valuable source for historical anthropological work. Until now, however, it has remained a hidden treasure for the anthropology of migration. By the late 1940s and 1950s, migration was central to the lives of Puerto Rican sugarcane workers and their families, and Mintz recorded important details of it. His journal shows how people maneuvered within fields of power that were full of opportunities and constraints for people seeking to make a living by migrating. Thanks to Mintz, anthropologists can learn about working-class Puerto Ricans’ experiences, lives, and discussions about migration in the late 1940s. Mintz’s legacy in its many forms will continue offering anthropologists an opportunity to confront the present. [


This work was originally published in American Ethnologist, available at DOI: 10.1111/amet.12517



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