Table of Contents

Handbook of Research on Gender and Economic Life

Handbook of Research on Gender and Economic Life

Elgar original reference

Edited by Deborah M. Figart and Tonia L. Warnecke

The Handbook illuminates complex facets of the economic and social provisioning process across the globe. The contributors – academics, policy analysts and practitioners from wide-ranging areas of expertise – discuss the methodological approaches to, and analytical tools for, conducting research on the gender dimension of economic life. They also provide analyses of major issues facing both developed and developing countries. Topics explored include civil society, discrimination, informal work, working time, central bank policy, health, education, food security, poverty, migration, environmental activism and the financial crisis.

Chapter 30: Family migration in the US

Nina Banks

Subjects: economics and finance, radical and feminist economics, social policy and sociology, family and gender policy

Extract

Until recently, scholars assumed that male migration experiences were typical and therefore were sufficient for explaining the migration process. Researchers contributed to this assumption by conducting empirical studies primarily on male migrants. However, nearly half of all 200 million international migrants are women. Since the 1980s, the feminization of migration has led feminist scholars to develop more appropriate studies by analyzing the various ways in which gender affects motivations for and patterns of migration, household decision-making, networks, family relations, macroeconomic policies, labor market outcomes, relocation adjustments, and so on. Feminist theories of migration do not view gender as the primary factor influencing female migrants. Rather, gender is understood through the lens of inter sectionality since gender is constituted by social class, race-ethnicity, nationality, citizenship, religion, age, and sexuality. Patricia Pressar (1999) says that the process of ‘engendering’ migration studies involves analyzing the ways in which changing political and economic conditions affect male and female migrants differently as well as the role played by mediating institutions, such as households in international migration. Moreover, migration is often a disruptive process that affects a migrant’s sense of self, group identity, and family roles. After relocation, migrants must learn to negotiate new social systems, institutions, and meaning systems (Lansford et al., 2007). Migration between the US and Mexico is often described as ‘transnational’ since migrants tend to maintain strong familial and cultural ties to Mexico but are also involved in and connected to institutions and practices within the United States.

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