Accepted Paper:

Transnational households: migration, mutuality and the 'good life' among Portuguese-Bangladeshis  

Author:

José Mapril (Center for Research in Anthropology (CRIA), Universidade Nova de Lisboa)

Paper short abstract:

Drawing on a long term fieldwork about Portuguese Bangladeshis, the objective of this paper is to show the articulations between households, extended families, transnational migration and the ‘good life’.

Paper long abstract:

The main objective of this paper is to highlight the way extended families, as moral persons, are transnationalized and how these are associated with ideas (and practices) about the search for a 'good' life and the reproduction of the household status.

This argument is based on a long term ethnography of Bangladeshi extended families living between Portugal and Bangladesh. Over the past 20 years, Bangladeshis in Portugal have reunited their families, invested in businesses and in their children's education, while maintaining a close relation with their non-migrant relatives in the desh (bengali word for home, in this case Bangladesh, see Gardner 1993), through economic and social remittances, rituals, the circulation of food, among other examples (tangible and intangible goods circulate in both ways, though). These forms of intergenerational participation and mutuality (Sahlins 2013) take place mainly at the level of the household and within extended families, and they reveal how the house, as a moral category and person, is transnationalized in a context marked by a search for a 'good life'.

Panel P141
Oikos: households, markets and nation