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1. There are multiple narratives from different groups of Haitian refugees at Guantanamo. The HIV “prison camp” is one compelling narrative, but there are also the stories of everyone that didn’t even make it to the base because they were turned back at sea (doing immigration trials without lawyers, the bias demonstrated in these trials). There is also the story of the children held at Guantanamo and then returned to Haiti.

2. Contrast between attitudes towards Haitian and Cuban refugees, especially related to the Cold War politics. This topics leads into a discussion of US imperialism and involvement in Duvalier’s regime. The Hansen book tells a story of US imperialism and much of our discussion centered around that idea in our last meeting. We should evaluated what limitations there are to that story.

I would recommend everyone read “Haiti, Guantánamo, and the “One Indispensable Nation”: U.S. Imperialism, “Apparent States,” and Postcolonial Problematics of Sovereignty” by Jana Evans Braziel, which was in our resource pack. It is a response to “Where is Guantanamo?” by Amy Kaplan.
I also found “Refugees as People: The Portrayal of Refugees in American Human Interest Stories” by Sarah Steimel, which discusses media portrayal of refugees in general. Her main thesis is that refugees in the US are portrayed as victims who are seeking the American Dream, but fail to achieve it. I think that this perspective is important given our discussion about using one or two individual stories for the panel.


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