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The International Handbook on Gender, Migration and Transnationalism

The International Handbook on Gender, Migration and Transnationalism

Global and Development Perspectives

International Handbooks on Gender series

Edited by Laura Oso and Natalia Ribas Mateos

The International Handbook on Gender, Migration and Transnationalism represents a state-of-the-art review of the critical importance of the links between gender and migration in a globalising world. It draws on original, largely field-based contributions by authors across a range of disciplinary provenances worldwide.

Chapter 20: Temporary female migrations through transnational family networks: the ethnographic case of the caregiver in Riffian Imazighen women

Irina Casado i Aijón

Subjects: development studies, development economics, family and gender policy, migration, economics and finance, development economics, geography, human geography, politics and public policy, migration, social policy and sociology, family and gender policy, migration, urban and regional studies, migration


I shall start this chapter by introducing two ethnographic cases which allow me to illustrate and raise its main subject. Both of them were collected during my fieldwork (2006–11) among Riffian Imazighen residents in the comarca of Osona (Catalonia): the cases of Nadia and of Amina. Nadia was a single Riffian girl who lived in Nador, the biggest city in the Rif, northern Morocco, with her parents and her other single siblings. She was 18 years old when her older sister, Rachida, became pregnant with her second child. After Rachida had got married she had migrated to Vic, Catalonia, in the final step of a large family reunion process initiated by her husband. In the seventh month of Rachida’s pregnancy Nadia travelled to Vic to take care of her sister during the final months of her pregnancy and once the child was born. Nadia travelled alone from Nadorto Vic, not only to take direct care of Rachida but also to replace her in her motherhood role during this period.

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