This introductory chapter explores the social organization of migration, the forces driving it, and the images that migrants produce and circulate of themselves through communicative practice and exchange between Peru and the United States, by drawing on a series of extended case studies and upon more general social theory and scholarship on migration and mobility. It also demonstrates how the difficulty of maintaining meaningful transnational lives in today's world is embedded in the process of always-partial communication between migrants, their families, their communities, and the state. The situated representations of self and Other that are produced within these relationships operate in shaping how indigenous and rural migrants strive to become mobile.
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