Accepted Paper:

Pakistani diaspora and the quest for wellbeing  
Mikkel Rytter (Aarhus University)

Paper long abstract:

Pakistani migrant families in Denmark have achieved levels of material prosperity, economic security and social mobility that the first generation could only dream of before they left Pakistan. They have fulfilled the promises of development and progress inherent in grand narratives of migration and modernity. However, the apparent success has also created disappointment and disillusion. Pakistanis currently go through a specific 'crisis of success' that affects the moral order of family relations and household organisation. The well-educated independent second generation often challenge and redefine basic ideas of what it means to be and do family. This happens within a Danish context where national policies and legal measures have been introduced to rearrange the organisation and intimacies of Muslim immigrant families in the name of 'integration'.

This paper discusses how Pakistani migrants cope with various kinds of afflictions by consulting Islamic healers in both Denmark and Pakistan. The quest for wellbeing is not only related to pains and suffering of 'the individual body' but also to ongoing transformations of 'the social body' of family and kinship relations.

Panel W081
Crisis, pain and wellbeing: the imagining and bearing of refugee/migrants social, moral and existential crisis