The Cape Verdean "community" in Portugal : anthropological constructions from within and without
The elite and the labour migrants live in completely different worlds: the first in middle-class suburbs and the second in shantytowns and council housing projects. Notions of 'race' and 'class', based on differences in complexion, education and wealth, contribute to the existence of these two groups of Cape Verdeans as separate entities. While the elite Portuguese Cape Verdeans are almost invisible within the mainstream society, the Cape Verdean labour migrants are highly visible because of their poor social integration. While the descendants of the elite are diluting within the Portuguese mainstream, the descendants of the labour migrants are occupying the fringes of Portuguese society and developing an oppositional identity in relation to the Portuguese mainstream. The first part of this thesis gives a detailed description of the Cape Verde archipelago and the foundations of its colonial society, and of the important issue of Cape Verdean migration. The second part presents the life of the two groups of Cape Verdeans in postcolonial Portugal and the ways the Portuguese mainstream perceive them.