Transnational family networks are the underbelly of the global penetration of capitalism.
Linda Basch, Nina Glick Schiller, and Cristina Szanton Blanc 1
You who are thirsty to return home, when you return you do not have to stay forever and give up residence elsewhere…. What we want is for you to be able to return home whenever you want and for you to be able to return where you are working now whenever you like. I am not asking you to return permanently and forsake the other place completely.
Jean-Bertrand Aristide, former President of Haiti 2
In Haiti in 1804, freed Blacks and mulattos joined with slaves against Napoleonic France to achieve the Caribbean's first successful revolution for independence. The largely Black nation remained something of a pariah throughout the 19th century, isolated politically, though penetrated economically by international capitalism. Only in the 20th century did a semblance of a middle class emerge, referred to by the color term milat (“light skinned”). Although it comprised only 2% or 3% of the population, this class was itself quite stratified, with its wealthier members looking to Europe, mainly France, for culture and their children's educations. This dominant class, concentrated in the capital of Port-au-Prince but including elite families in the smaller towns, lived off whatever surplus could be extracted from the masses of poor peasants. The peasantry, which worked small subsistence plots with some market sales, spoke Kreyol, a mixture of French