Doing family: Nicaraguan transnational families’ narratives on motherhood

Ano: 2021

Global Networks. V. 22. Issue 2. p .308-324.


Autores/as: Renée de Palma, Antía Pérez-Caramés, Verónica Verdía Varela.


This article explores transnational motherhood from the perspective of Nicaraguan migrant workers in Spain and Nicaraguan family members caring for migrant women's children. Our sample included families with children who have special needs, to explore how economically disadvantaged families draw upon migration as a strategy to address educational and physical needs not provided by a weak ‘exclusionary’ social policy regime. Applying the notion of the family display to migrant mothers and their families, our research reveals how gendered expectations of parenting shape their experience and the ways in which they explain and justify the migratory project. Migrants and family members, with certain reservations and limitations, actively reinvent motherhood by (re)constructing financial contribution as a type of caring. Our research also unsettles the classic notion of the ‘other mother’, as respondents describe caring as distributed over extended kin networks.

Antía Pérez Caramés

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