HOMInG’s Paolo Boccagni and Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo (University of Southern California) have just published a new article on the potential of homemaking as a category to approach migrant incorporation at a local level, moving beyond the predominant opposition between assimilation (or integration) and transnationalism. The piece, just out in International Migration, is part of a Special Issue on ‘How migrants become members’, edited by Barbara Laubenthal.
See below the abstract of the article!
P. Boccagni, P. Hondagneu-Sotelo
Integration and the struggle to turn space into “our” place: Homemaking as a way beyond the stalemate of assimilationism vs transnationalism
International Migration, online first, https://doi.org/10.1111/imig.12846
This article investigates homemaking as a set of practices and a perspective on migrants’ ways of local incorporation, with its own material, emotional and relational underpinnings. Homemaking has the potential to emerge as an original category of analysis in immigrant integration, moving beyond the contraposition between assimilationism and transnationalism. Based also on our ongoing research, both in the United States and in Europe, we argue for the significance of migrants’ interactions with specific local structures of opportunities, including people and institutions as much as the built and natural environment. The latter is a critical site where the meanings, opportunities and contents of integration are negotiated between immigrant newcomers and their local and transnational counterparts. Migrants’ stratified rights, opportunities and aspirations to make themselves at home open a promising research perspective on group relations, as embedded in everyday materialities. While integration is a multi‐dimensional and multi‐scalar effort, it still rests on place‐bound fields of inequalities and interaction within and between groups, and on underlying differences in views, emotions and practices of home. These are both a mirror of larger asymmetries of power and of the opportunities available to challenge them.