Children’s Agency in Translocal Roma Families
This chapter discusses some of the key practices and negotiations of agency that are important in the relationships, communities and geographies of Romanian Roma children. It draws on ethnographic material collected between 2012 and 2014 in various locations in Romania and Finland. Children had an important role in maintaining and shaping family and community ties, as well as in contributing to family income, in the process of which they very often conformed to community and family norms. These were, however, not passive obedient practices but strategic means of gaining family and social prestige, strengthening their own social networks and, therefore, securing their futures. In addition, economic insecurities, housing and spatial deprivation, and racialisation shaped these practices in ways that are likely to be more powerful than in other childhood and mobility settings.
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