Crossing Boundaries and Changing Identities
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Population movements on a large scale have been a prominent feature of modern society, but there have been as yet few attempts to look beneath the surface of mass movements of people. There is a particularly urgent need to disentangle the specific experience of women who are critically involved in the process of adaptation to new worlds and ways of life. Most of the women studied in this volume hoped to retain their original culture and lifestyle at least to some extent but found that the exigencies of being migrants and refugees forced them to examine their preconceptions and to adopt roles, both social and economic, which they would have rejected at home. This remaking of self was often a traumatic experience with serious repercussions on their relationships with their menfolk. On the other hand, for some women, emigration also provided a spur to ambition and progress, a means of achieving a social and economic mobility that they would have been denied at home.
Table of Contents
Contents: G. Buijs, Introduction - S.L. Skar, The Gendered Dynamics of Quechua Colonisation: Relations of Centre and Periphery in Peru - M. Eastmond, Reconstructing Life: Chilean Women Refugees and the Dilemmas of Exile - D. Abdulrahim, Defining Gender in Exile: Palestinian Women in West Berlin - H. Summerfield, Patterns of Adaptation: Somali and Bangladeshi Women in Britain - P. Bhachu, Identities Constructed and Reconstructed: Representations of Asian Women in Britain - S. Mascarenhas-Keyes, International and Internal Migration: Changes in the Identity of Catholic and Hindu Women in Goa - L. Hitchcox, Vietnamese Refugees in Hong Kong: Behaviour and Control - C. Swaisland, Female Migration and Social Mobility: Female Domestic Servants to South Africa, 1860-1914 - G. Buijs, Women Alone: Migrants from Transkei Employed in Rural Natal
Gina Buijs Professor of Anthropology at the University of Venda,South Africa, formerly Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology, Rhodes University, and visiting Research Fellow, Centre for Cross-Cultural Research on Women, University of Oxford