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Heidelberg Center for
Ibero-American Studies

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CURRENT COURSES FOR WINTER SEMESTER
RECENT PRESENTATIONS

"Del Páramo del Ángel, a la Selva del Darién: transitando entre la lealtad del control", panel "Securitización y migración", Congreso Internacional Violencias en las Migraciones Del cuerpo al Estado. Mexico, September 24, 2021. Organizers: UNAM, Colegio de Michoacán, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana de México.

 
RECENT PUBLICATIONS

Álvarez Velasco, S. (in print): “Where is she?”. The Long Year. Edited by Thomas J. Sugrue and Caitlin Zaloom. New York: Columbia University Press.

 

Álvarez Velasco, S. (in print) “Ecuadorean Migrant Smuggling: A Diversity of Contemporary Patterns and Dynamics”. In David Kyle and Luigi Achilli (Eds). Global Human Smuggling: Control, Chaos, and Creativity, 3rd Ed. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.

 

Álvarez Velasco, S. (in print). “Between Hostility and Solidarity: The Production of the Andean Region–Southern Cone Transit Migratory Corridor”. In Gioconda Herrera & Carmen Gómez (coordinators). Migration in South America. Serie Regional Reader. Ed. London: Springer/Imiscoe.

 

Álvarez Velasco, S. (in print). “En búsqueda de un lugar: tránsitos irregularizados por las Américas”. En María Guadalupe Liliana Rivera Sánchez, Gioconda Herrera Mosquera y Eduardo Enrique Domenech (Coordinators). Movilidades, derecho a migrar y control fronterizo en América Latina y el Caribe. México: CLACSO-siglo XXI.

 

Álvarez Velasco, S. (in print). “Tránsitos migratorios irregularizados”. In Ceja Cárdenas, Iréri, Soledad Álvarez Velasco y Ulla D. Berg (eds.). Migraciones. Colección Palabras Clave. CLACSO y Universidad Autónoma de México.

 

Álvarez Velasco, S. (in print). “Aquí entendí lo que significa tener la piel negra” Resintiendo y resistiendo al racismo del país de la “ciudadanía universal”. Antología de Racismo en el Ecuador. Quito: Colectivo Resistencia Cimarrones.

 
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Jun.-Prof. Dr. Soledad Álvarez Velasco

Research
Publications

Oscar Loureda

HCIAS Junior Professor “Migration and the Americas”

Affiliation: Faculty of Chemistry and Earth Sciences, Institute of Geography
Co-operation: Heidelberg Center for American Studies 

 

 

Soledad Álvarez Velasco holds a PhD in Human Geography from King’s College London, a Master’s degree in Social Anthropology from the Universidad Iberoamericana (Mexico), and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the Universidad San Francisco (Quito, Ecuador).

Before joining the HCIAS in September 2021, she was a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Comparative Cultural Studies at the University of Houston (February 2020 – August 2021).

She is a member of: the Critical Geography Collective of Ecuador, a collective of geographers, social scientists, and activists concerned with answering theoretical and practical questions about growing territorial tensions in Ecuador; of the Grupo de Trabajo (GT): Fronteras: movilidades, identidades y comercios, Latin American Council of Social Sciences; and of Colectiva Infancia, an international research network specialized in children migration across the Americas. In 2018, Colectiva Infancia, won a grant from the National Geographic Foundation to develop the bilingual multimedia project Children On The Move An Ethnographic Mosaic of the Americas.

She is member of the editorial team of the Journal Refugees and Conflict, of the Latin-American Journal Periplos, specialized on migration research and founder and co-coordinator of the transnational digital project (Im)Mobilities in the Americas and COVID-19.

 

Research

Soledad Álvarez Velasco’s research analyses the interrelationship between mobility, control and spatial transformations across the Americas. She focuses on the intersection between undocumented south-north transit migration, border control regimes, the formation of migratory corridors across the Americas and the migrant struggle across these transnational spaces.

Her research draws from perspectives in critical geography, critical migration and border studies, and feminist political geography. It combines a multi-scale and historical analysis with multi-sited ethnography and a digital ethnography based on a migrant centered perspective to reconstruct migrants’ spatial and temporal trajectories. Her research foregrounds the Andean Region, particularly Ecuador, as a key space for understanding the dynamics at stake in the transits of Latin American, Caribbean, African and Asian migrants to the U.S. Her work also analyzes how the externalization of U.S. border enforcement policies in South American states, together with the inconsistencies in their own national migration policies, serve a systemic global formation of selective mobility control. She also studies the irregularized movement of unaccompanied migrant children who transit through the extended corridor connecting South America with Mexico and the U.S., as well as the transnational smuggling networks operating across it, and the physical and digital infrastructures involved in facilitating that movement across migratory corridors in the continent.

Research in Progress

  • Book project Mobility, Control, and the Production of Space in Ecuador (2023) to be published by Routledge, London, as part of Border Regions Series.

The book examines and answers this question: What are the dynamics at work in the production of Ecuador as a global space of undocumented migratory transits toward the U.S.? Based on historical and ethnographic research focused on the lived and digital everyday struggles of Caribbean, Middle Eastern, and African migrants, as well as Ecuadorean deportees – all undocumented migrants in transit from Ecuador to the United States – this book analyses the past and present of the production of Ecuador as a global space of transit and platform for illegalized migration arising from the unsolved tensions between human mobility and the politics of control. It also zooms in into the so- called “post-neoliberal” period of Ecuador’s “Citizen’s Revolution” government (2007-2017), when the country adopted an utterly progressive constitution in migration matters. However, as the book demonstrates in the country of alleged “universal citizenship,” the unsolved historical tension between mobility and control is far from being solved, and the effects of the U.S. externalized control regime southwards are paradoxically present reinforcing Ecuador’s condition as a global space of transit and migrant smuggling. The book contributes with an analysis of an understudied case of a global space of transit in the America.

 

  • Mobilities, Control and Spatial Struggles across the Americas in a (post) pandemic context

Based upon the findings of the digital transnational trilingual project (Im)mobility in the Americas and COVID-19, which compares the dynamics of mobility and control across 19 countries (Canada, the United States, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Costa Rica, Panama, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia and Brazil) her research will deepen how the pandemic has brought:

  1. spatial and temporal interconnections between northbound and southbound migratory corridors across the Americas;
  2. the aftermaths of the devastation of migrants’ living conditions and the exacerbation of undocumented transits through both corridors;
  3. regional socio-economic and political pressure that these transits place on societies and States along both migratory corridors;
  4. new ways in which the U.S. externalizes its borders across the Americas;
  5. reinforcement of the heterogeneous Latin American migratory control regime and its damaging effects on the migrant population; and
  6. forms of migrant resistance and survival during crossing and waiting times in a highly hostile, racist and xenophobic environment.

 

Publications

Books

  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad (2016). Frontera Sur Chiapaneca: el muro humano de la violencia. Análisis de la normalización de la violencia hacia los migrantes indocumentados en tránsito [Chiapas' Southern Border: The Human Wall of Violence. An analysis of violence normalization towards undocumented migrants in transit]. Mexico: Universidad Iberoamericana de México and Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social, CIESAS.

Co-authored Books

  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad and Sandra Guillot Cuéllar (2012). Entre la violencia y la invisibilidad. Análisis del proceso de migración indocumentada de la niñez y adolescencia ecuatoriana a Estados Unidos [Between Violence and Invisibility. An analysis of Ecuadorian unaccompanied children and adolescents in the migratory process to the U.S.] Quito: SENAMI.

Coordination of Special Issues

Scientific Articles and Literary Contributions

Book Chapters

  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad; Maribel Casas-Cortés, Sebastián Cobarruvias and Nicholas De Genova. “Prologo”. Europa/crisis: Nuevas Palabras Clave en la 'Crisis' en y de 'Europa'. Co-edited by Nicholas De Genova and Martina Tazzioli. Madrid: Editorial La Catarata.
  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad (2021). “Entre la Movilidad y el Control: la producción de una zona extendida de tránsito migratorio entre la región Andina-Centroamérica-México. En Salvador Maldonado (Editor). Soberanías en vilo. Miradas desde la seguridad ciudadana en América Latina. México: El Colegio de Michoacán, México.
  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad (2019). “Ecuador-México-US.: la producción de una zona de tránsito entre políticas de control y la autonomía de la migración”. En Cordero, B, Mezzadra, M & Varela, A.(coord.). América Latina en movimiento. Autonomía de la migración, fronteras y nuevas geografías de lucha. México: BUAP-Traficantes de Sueños: México.
  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad. (2018). “Ecuador”. Migrant Smuggling Data and Research: A global review of the emerging evidence base. Volume II. IOM, Geneva.
  • Escobar García, A. & Soledad Álvarez Velasco (2013). “Family and School Reconfiguration: The Case of Ecuadorian Highland Migration to Spain”. In Cortina Jerónimo & Enrique Ochoa Reza (editors). New Perspectives on International Migration and Development (Initiative for Policy Dialogue). New York: University of Columbia Press.
  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad. (2012). “Imágenes de Violencia Contemporánea: aproximaciones a la realidad del corredor migratorio México-Estados Unidos”. En Yerko Castro (coord.), La migración y sus efectos en la cultura. México: CONACULTA.
  • Álvarez Velasco, Soledad (2011). “¿Guerra en Silencio? Una aproximación etnográfica a la violencia normalizada hacia los migrantes indocumentados en tránsito por la frontera sur chiapaneca”, en Agudo Sanchíz, Alejandro y Marco Estrada Saavedra (editores), (Trans) Formaciones del Estado en los márgenes de Latinoamérica, imaginarios alternativos, aparatos inacabados y espacios transnacionales, México, El Colegio de México y Universidad Iberoamericana.
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Letzte Änderung: 2021-10-11
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