This chapter discusses the Panama of Walrond's youth—a place he had identified with more closely than any other. Panama has been one of the hemisphere's most volatile sites of political positioning and a crucible of transnational communities. The experience of Panama's Afro-Caribbean community is well documented, and Walrond wrote a great deal about Panama after he left it. He had come to see Panama as his ticket out of the West Indies—a springboard to the United States—but the area in which he lived was in an important sense a satellite of the United States, the Canal Zone, a colony in the tropics.
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