In Search of What Better Life? Rethinking Caribbean Migration to Canada


  • Karen Flynn University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign


Caribbean migration to Canada is often discussed through the trope of migrants searching for “a better life.” This framework ignores and obscures migration histories and patterns of certain groups, including other compelling reasons for migration. The experiences of study abroad students, teachers, and nurses broaden the current conceptualization of Caribbean migration by being attentive to transnational practices that involve nonconventional routes, such as first- and second-generation Caribbean Canadians who travelled from Canada to East Asia to teach English in the late 1990s and early to mid-2000s. Caribbean migration is best conceptualized through a continuum, which better accounts for a confluence of dynamic, often interrelated drivers of migration, including but not limited to labour demands, education, family and other relationships, increased access to travel, and a desire to experience other parts of the world.

Author Biography

Karen Flynn, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Karen Flynn is Associate Professor in the Departments of Gender and Women Studies and African American Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.