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Transculturation and Place-Making in Miami’s Little Havana

Authors: Taylor Fox*, University of Missouri - Columbia
Topics: Immigration/Transnationalism, Cultural Geography, Ethnic Geography
Keywords: Place-Making, place, transculturation, ethnic enclaves, Latin
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


In the 1960s, Miami rapidly transformed into a Cuban place with its core community setting up in what is now known as Little Havana. In the past few decades, this place has shifted from a predominantly Cuban enclave to a multiethnic Latin community which begs the question: Is the existing, Spanish-speaking, ethnic enclave built by Cubans inviting other Latin peoples to settle there as well, thus leading to a transcultural place? Using ethnographic interviews as well as participatory mapping to determine what all participants agree is Little Havana, initial findings show that the area all agree is “Little Havana” is actually the most touristic and gentrified blocks within the place. Furthermore, the impact of dozens of new Spanish-speaking ethnic groups moving to the area has ignited a transcultural event; a development of a new culture amalgamating many group’s values. In my work, I analyze what impact this cultural shift is having on the community’s overall sense of place.

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