Boundary work and social relations of middle class Filipino transnationals in Indian cities

Jozon Lorenzana

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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Abstract

[Truncated] The occupations of overseas Filipino workers in the international labour market and their often marginal position in host societies generate classed, gendered and racial stereotypes. Such categorisations affect not only how overseas Filipino workers are regarded, but also how they reinforce class relations among Filipinos in the homeland and elsewhere. Acknowledging their marginality, scholars (e.g. Aguilar 2002) of Philippine migration call attention to the ways Filipino migrants exercise agency amid structures and representations that limit the identities and social relations open to them. This ethnography responds to the task of investigating migrant agency within a Global South to South migration route by looking at Filipino transnationals who are in relatively privileged positions in the workplace and host society of urban India. They work as professionals, consultants or managers in the country’s expanding economic sectors such as manufacturing, service and retail. I focus on how they constitute themselves through boundary work, a relational and situational process of constructing similarity and difference through a particular set of socio-cultural criteria (Lamont 2002). From July 2010-June 2011, I conducted fieldwork in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore and examined the boundary work between Filipino transnationals and Indian locals, and among Filipino transnational communities in the context of everyday life, work and mediated space.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctorate
Publication statusUnpublished - Oct 2014

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