Child mobility and transnational imagination in the context of migration from Tajikistan


Borisova E.V.

Junior research fellow, European University at Saint-Petersburg, Saint-Petersburg, Russia borisova.ebv@yandex.ru

ID of the Article: 6812


For citation:

Borisova E.V. Child mobility and transnational imagination in the context of migration from Tajikistan. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2017. No 8. P. 73-80



Abstract

Labour migration from Central Asian countries to Russia became socially embedded into the everyday life of a large portion of population in sending societies and highly transnational in its nature. Spending the majority of their lives in Russia migrants, nevertheless, maintain dense ties to their relatives and friends left in their places of origin and frequently make short visits to manifest their status in the community. However, not only migrants but also their families can get involved into transnational way of life and be very mobile, this fact often ignored in Russian migration studies. Mobility of children is rarely taken into consideration and migrants’ children are usually focused upon within pervasive discourses on migrants’ integration and adaptation in the receiving society. Based on the ethnographic research conducted in the northern Tajikistan I suggest that mobility of children should be considered from transnational perspective in order to capture children’s experience and perception of migration. Being socialized in transnational social spaces children grow up absorbing practices, images and values circulating between sending and receiving societies and rethink them through their own and their parents’ and friends’ mobility experience. This expands their imaginary living spaces — they appropriate the space of the receiving country through migrants’ narratives, which allows them to inscribe it into their life expectations and plans. Although there is a boundary between receiving and sending societies deliberately being maintained through the reproduction of contradictory images, despite all the risks mobility is associated with opportunities to raise one’s social status.


Keywords
mobility; migration; transnationalism; childhood; Central Asia
References

Abahsin S.N. (2012) Central Asian migration: practices, local communities, transnationalism. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie [Ethnographic review]. No. 4: 3–13. (In Russ.)

Abashin S.N. (2015) Return home: family and migration strategies in Usbekistan. Ab Imperio. No. 3: 125–165. (In Russ.)

Aitieva M. (2015) Reconstituting transnational families: ethnography of family practices between Kyrgyzstan and Russia’. PhD Thesis, University of Manchester.

Akifyeva R.N. (2015) Children and Their Migrant Parents in St. Petersburg: Divergent Lines of Behavior. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie [Ethnographic review]. No. 15: 117–134 (In Russ.)

Aleksandrov D.A., Baranova V.V., Ivaniushina V.A. (2012) Children and parent migrants and their interactions with Russian schools. Voprosy obrazovaniia [Educational issues]. No. 1: 176–199. (In Russ.)

Borisova E.V. (2016) Parenting at a Distance: Transnational Practices in Migrant Families from Tajikistan. Antropologicheskii Forum [Forum for Anthropology and Culture]. No. 28: 228–245. (In Russ.)

Brednikova O.E. (2014) Scenario approach in migration studies. Presentation at the migration seminar at the European University at St. Petersburg. 26. 03. 2014. (In Russ.)

Brednikova O.E., Sabirova G.A. (2015) Children in Migrant Families: Parenting Strategies in Transnational Contexts. Antropologicheskii Forum [Forum for Anthropology and Culture]. No. 26: 127–152. (In Russ.)

Dobson M. E. (2009) Unpacking children in migration research. Children’s Geographies. Vol. 7. 3: 355–360.

Florinskaya E.V. (2012). Migrants’ children in Russia: access to education and health care. Demoskop Weekley. URL: http://demoscope. ru/weekly/2012/0515/analit02.php (accessed 13.04.15). (In Russ.)

Gardner K. (2012) Transnational Migration and the study of children: an Introduction. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. Vol. 38. 6: 889–912.

Ilkhamov A. (2013) Labour migration and the ritual economy of the Uzbek extended family. Zeitschrit für Ethnologie. Vol. 138: 259–284.

Levitt P. (2001) The Transnational Villagers. Berkley: University of California Press.

Rahmonova-Schwartz D. (2012) Family and transnational mobility in post-Soviet Central Asia. Ph.D. Thesis. Baden-Baden: Nomos.

Reeves M. (2009) Beyond Economic Determinism: The Micro-Dynamics of Migration from Rural Kyrgyzstan. Neprikosnovennyi Zapas [Contingent reserve]. Vol. 66. No. 4: 262–280. (In Russ.)

Sabirova G. A., Andreeva Yu. V. (2014). Children of Migrants and “Their Own”: School Peer Group of Adolescents. Zhurnal sotsiologii i sotsialnoy antropologii [Journal of Sociology and Social Anthropology]. No. 72(1): 170–189. (In Russ.)

Zotova N.A. (2012) Kishlak by the River: A Case Study of the Migration Process in One Settlement. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie [Ethnographic review]. No 4: 51–67. (In Russ.)


Content No 8, 2017