Migration’s legacy …

Following on from looking at the Linux distros developed in Argentina and Venezuela, I thought I’d broaden my scope a little and see what information I could track down on the use of Linux in other Latin American countries.

Now when searching for information like this you sometimes end up going down strange rabbit holes for reasons that you don’t quite understand but seem promising at the time. And that’s how I ended up looking at the TVPeru website.

I didn’t find what I was looking for but I couldn’t help noticing that one of the news anchors was called Josefina Townsend – which seemed a little odd given that Townsend is such an impeccably English name.

On second thoughts not so strange. My rereading of Bruce Chatwin’s In Patagonia had reminded me of just how many English Welsh and Scottish people migrated to Latin America in the nineteenth century.

Some made good, some lost everything and some made good and then lost it – in one of his letters Chatwin recounts a story of a successful British family living in Iquique making a good living from guano – that was until chemical fertilisers came along.

Overnight, they were ruined, or if not exactly ruined, had lost the source of their prosperity. The daughters of the family lived on among the tattered remains of their former grandeur stuck between two worlds. Always the emigrants curse – not quite belonging where you are, and no longer belonging to where you came from.

Chatwin wrote that the history of Argentina could be seen in the Buenos Aires phone book – he meant that there were so many surnames from recognisably different heritages that you could see the history of migration in a country …

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About dgm

IT professional, ex research psychologist, blogger, twitterer, and amateur classical and medieval historian ...
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