Dr. Caitlin E. Fouratt

Caitlin Fouratt

Director of Global Migration Studies Minor

Associate Professor of International Studies

Office – Liberal Arts 3 – 100B

Caitlin E. Fouratt (Ph.D. UCI, Anthropology, 2014). Central America. Dr. Fouratt’s book project Flexible Families: Transnational Migration in Costa Rica and Nicaragua explores the intimate connections between Nicaraguan migrants in Costa Rica and their families in Nicaragua in order to understand how economic crisis, environmental pressures, and failed government policies contribute to the reconfiguration of care and kinship among transnational families. She argues that Nicaraguan transnational families cannot be understood in terms of an idealized or romanticized nuclear family but rather must be examined in the context of the decades of political, social, and economic crises that have plagued Nicaragua and the constantly shifting legal landscape of Costa Rica. For Nicaraguans, migration represents a strategy of caring for loved ones in the face of absent or failed forms of public care such as healthcare, education, and social security. However, for transnational families, the instabilities of Nicaraguan family-life are further complicated by the uncertainties migrants face in Costa Rica, including repressive immigration laws, poverty, and xenophobia. Her work demonstrates how intimate relationships and understandings of absence, presence, and care are reshaped as Nicaraguan families seek to care for one another across borders and in the face of the contradictory presences and absences of state policies on both sides of the border. 
Dr. Fouratt’s other research interests relate to refugees and forced migrants within Central America, and with state responses to shifting regional migration dynamics. She is actively involved in the Red de Jovenes Sin Fronteras, a youth association based in Costa Rica that advocates for and with refugee and migrant youth.

Dr. Fouratt has worked with I/ST student research assistants in her work with refugees in Costa Rica through the University Honors Program, UROP, and McNair Scholars Program.

On campus she is involved with the Dream Success Center as well as study abroad and international education.