‘Global Householding’ in Mixed Families: The Case of Thai Migrant Women in Belgium
Although marriage migration is on the rise, the global householding of migrant spouses in ‘mixed’ families remains largely understudied. The present chapter attempts to address this empirical gap by examining gender and intergenerational dynamics in the mixed families of Thai women in Belgium. Using the ‘care circulation’ analytical framework, we identify the way bun khun (a culturally defined sense of obligation to care for one’s natal family members, notably parents) influences Thai women’s global householding. We show that, in order to avoid conjugal conflicts while striving to be ‘dutiful daughters’ to their parents, these women adopt three strategies: accomplishing a traditional reproductive role at home, earning their own livelihood, and tapping their family networks of solidarity.
AFF’s study from which the present chapter draws, was supported by a research fellowship of the Belgian National Fund for Scientific Research (FNRS). This study would have not been possible without the trust of the migrant respondents and their family members. The views expressed in this chapter are of the authors and not of the FNRS.
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