Many scholars see caregiving relationships as being based on mutual dependency or interdependency. Extensively cited notions of the ’global care chain’ or ’international division of reproductive labour’ have prepared the ground for analysis of global interdependencies in several domains. This book goes further by taking mutual dependency as a starting point for analysing all relationships. Using the example of Vietnamese families in the Czech Republic and the Czech native nannies, it shows how paid caregiving is contextualized in terms of various relationships between three types of actors: employer-employee, caring for the child, and mother-child. All of these ties are based on ontologically different principles and each of them operates as a piece of a puzzle, which is meaningful only in relation to each other. SouralovÃ¡ considers caregiving to be a formative activity that establishes ties between the concerned actors, whose subjectivities are mutually shaped in the daily practice of caregiving. With its stress on mutuality in care work, this ground-breaking book illuminates the new forms of interpersonal, interethnic, and intergenerational relationships and highlights the mechanisms and processes in which kinship ties are negotiated and reproduced.
Table of Contents
Introduction: ‘Where do the children play?’; ‘We are here alone’: the hiring decision in the struggle for family resettlement; ‘We need each other’: childcare as a paid and fulfilling activity; ‘Everything for us but nothing with us’: the meaning of motherhood, delegation of care work and its consequences; ‘From nanny to granny’: caring as kinning; ‘Europe is my brain, Asia is my heart’: grandmotherland and kinning as home-bonding; Conclusion: mutual dependency, emotionality, and kinship ties in care-giving; Appendices; Bibliography; Index.
Adéla SouralovÃ¡ is Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology, Social Anthropology and Office for Population Studies at Masaryk University in the Czech Republic.