Within the overall global context of current migration trends, the Caribbean demonstrates the particular ways in which globalization and international capital impacts upon human migration. International capital has always played an important role in the movement of Caribbean people. With a high propensity for movement away from the sugar plantation systems of the islands after Emancipation during the nineteenth century, and with opportunities for migration in the sugar and industrial activities in the wider Caribbean based on North American and European capital investments, significant movements took place to those locations as well as to the metropolises themselves.
People moved readily, even though they often engaged in work similar to that in which they had been engaged prior to migrating. Caribbean populations became and remained highly mobile and, by the middle of the twentieth century, a culture had evolved in which migration had become the acknowledged means not only of expanding the opportunities of limited island environments, but also the means relied upon to circumvent virtually any negative circumstance that existed in the home country.