“Leave to Come Back”: The Importance of Family Land in a Transnational Caribbean Community

  • Beth Mills
Part of the Studies of the Americas book series (STAM)


Anthropologists, geographers, and sociologists working in the Caribbean have recognized a form of customary, kinship-based, land tenure among Afro-Caribbean people, often referred to as family land, beginning with Edith Clarke’s groundbreaking work in Jamaica in the 1950s.1 Since this early work, important contributions to the understanding of the history, meaning, and function of this type of customary land tenure have been made by Wilson2 in Providencia, Besson,3 Carnegie,4 and McKay5 in Jamaica, Rubenstein6 in St. Vincent, Barrow,7 Crichlow,8 and Dujon9 in St. Lucia, Fog Olwig10 in Nevis and St. John, and Maurer11 in the British Virgin Islands.


Land Tenure Land Scarcity Tourist Economy Migration Destination Family Land 
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© Jean Besson and Janet Momsen 2007

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  • Beth Mills

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