Advertisement

European Journal of Population

, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 65–87 | Cite as

An Origin and Destination Perspective on Family Reunification: The Case of Senegalese Couples

  • Pau Baizán
  • Cris Beauchemin
  • Amparo González-Ferrer
Article

Abstract

European societies are expressing growing concern about the consequences of migrant family reunification on their soil for the management of their borders and the success of the integration process. Many policy makers assume that most migrants intend to bring their relatives to Europe as soon as possible, and argue that it might be difficult for reunified migrants to integrate into their host societies. Our results concerning the process of reunification of Senegalese couples in France, Italy, or Spain strongly challenge this view. Using MAFE (Migration between Africa and Europe) data with a life event history approach, we show that (1) separation is often a long-lasting situation among Senegalese couples; (2) separated couples do not only reunify in Europe but also quite commonly in Senegal; (3) the couples who reunify in Europe tend to be those who adapt most readily to the European culture and economy.

Keywords

Migration Family reunification Transnational couple Africa Senegal 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Previous versions of this paper have been presented to the conference “Migration: A World in Motion” (Maastricht, 18–20 February 2010), the European Population Conference (Vienna, 1–4 September 2010), the Workshop on Spatial Mobility, Family Lives and Living Arrangements (IMISCOE-MIGREMUS, Bremen, 17–18 November 2011), and the Sixth African Population Conference (UAPS, Ouagadougou, 5–9 December 2011). We thank the participants to these events for their comments and suggestions. We also thank the anonymous referees. The research reported here has been founded by European Commission, Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development, and the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation, National Program of Research and Development (CSO2009-12816).

References

  1. Barber, J., Murphy, S., Axinn, W., & Maples, J. (2000). Discrete-time multilevel hazard analysis. Sociological Methodology, 30, 201–235.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Beauchemin, C. (2011). Migrations between Africa and Europe (MAFE): Rationale for a survey design. MAFE Methodological Working Paper 1, p. 42.Google Scholar
  3. Beauchemin, C., & Gonzalez-Ferrer, A. (2011). Sampling international migrants with origin-based snowballing method: New evidence on biases and limitations. Demographic Research, 25(3), 103–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bledsoe, C. H. (2008). “No Success without Struggle” revisited: West African models of socialization and transnational life in Spain. Researching transnational families, their children and the migration-development nexus. University of Amsterdam.Google Scholar
  5. Bledsoe, C. H., & Sow, P. (2008). Family reunification ideals and the practice of transnational reproductive life among Africans in Europe. MPIDR Working Paper, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research.Google Scholar
  6. Blossfeld, H.-P., & Rohwer, G. (2002). Techniques of event history modeling. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  7. Borjas, G. J. (1990). Friends or strangers. The impact of immigrants on the US economy. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  8. Bryceson, D., & Vuorela, U. (Eds.). (2002). The transnational family. New European frontiers and global networks. Oxford: Berg.Google Scholar
  9. Celikaksoy, A. et al. (2003). Marriage migration: Just another case of positive assortative matching? Aarhus School of Business Working Papers Series (03-27).Google Scholar
  10. Constant, A., & Massey, D. (2002). Return migration by German guestworkers: Neoclassical versus new economic theory. International Migration Review, 40, 5–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Courgeau, D. (1990). Migration, family and career: A life-course approach. In P. B. Baltes, D. L. Featherman, & R. M. Lerner (Eds.), Life-span development and behaviour (pp. 219–255). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  12. Dupire, M. (1977). Funérailles et relations entre lignages dans une société bilinéaire: les Serer (Sénégal). Anthropos, 72(3–4), 376–400.Google Scholar
  13. Findley, S. (1997). Migration and family interactions in Africa. In A. Adepoju (Ed.) Family, population and development (pp. 109–138). London: Zed Books.Google Scholar
  14. González-Ferrer, A. (2006). Who do immigrants marry? Partner choice of single immigrants in Germany. European Sociological Review, 22, 171–185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. González-Ferrer, A. (2007). The reunification of partners and children by male labor immigrants in Germany. Special issue of Zeitschrift für Familienforschung on the topic Immigrant Families in Europe, 3, 10–33.Google Scholar
  16. González-Ferrer, A., Baizán, P., & Beauchemin, C. (2012). Child-parents separation among Senegalese migrants to Europe. Migration strategies or cultural arrangements? The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 643(1), 106–133.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Grasmuck, S., & Pessar, P. R. (1991). Between two islands: Dominican international migration. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  18. Grillo, R., & Mazzucato, V. (2008). Africa<>Europe: A double engagement. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 34(2), 175–198.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gupta, P. (2003). Marriage at a distance: Spouse separation and the migrant family. Philadelphia, PA: Population Studies Center, University of Pennsylvania.Google Scholar
  20. Hondagneu-Sotelo, P. (1992). Overcoming patriarchal constraints. The reconstruction of gender relations among Mexican immigrant women and men. Gender and Society, 6, 393–415.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Hondagneu-Sotelo, P. (1994). Gendered transitions: Mexican experiences of immigration. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  22. Hondagneu-Sotelo, P. (1999). Gender and contemporary US migration. American Behavioral Scientist, 42, 565–576.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hooghiemstra, E. (2001). Migrants, partner selection and integration: Crossing borders? Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 32, 609–626.Google Scholar
  24. Kalmijn, M. (1998). Intermarriage and homogamy: Causes, patterns and trends. Annual Review of Sociology, 24, 395–421.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kalter, F., & Schroedter, J. (2010). Transnational marriage among former labour migrants in Germany. Zeitschrift für Familienforschung [Journal of Family Research], 22(1), 13–38.Google Scholar
  26. Kofman, E. (2004). Family-related migration: A critical review of European studies. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 30(2), 243–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kraler, A. (2010). Civic stratification, gender and family migration policies in Europe. Final Report. Vienna: International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD).Google Scholar
  28. Lievens, J. (1999). Family-formation migration from Turkey and Morocco to Belgium: The demand for marriage partners from the countries of origin. International Migration Review, 33, 717–744.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Mincer, J. (1978). Family migration decisions. Journal of Political Economy, 86, 749–773.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Mondain, N. (2009). Assessing the effects of out-migration on those left behind in Senegal: Local family dynamics between change and continuity. Paper presented at the XXVI International Population Conference.Google Scholar
  31. Mulder, C. H., & Wagner, M. (1993). Migration and marriage in the life course: A method for studying synchronized events. European Journal of Population/Revue européenne de Démographie, 9(1), 55–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. OECD. (2001). SOPEMI. Trends in international migration.Google Scholar
  33. Poiret, C. (1996). La famille africaine en France. Paris: L’harmattan.Google Scholar
  34. Reyneri, E. (2006). De la economía sumergida a la devaluación profesional: nivel educativo e inserción en el mercado de trabajo de los inmigrantes en Italia. Revista Española de Investigaciones Sociológicas, 116, 213–237.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Riccio, B. (2001). From ‘ethnic group’ to ‘transnational community’? Senegalese migrants ambivalent experiences and multiple trajectories. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 27(4), 583–599.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Rodríguez-García, D. (2006). Mixed marriages and transnational families in the intercultural context: A case study of African-Spanish couples in Catalonia. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 32(3), 403–433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Sandell, S. H. (1977). Women and the economics of family migration. Review of Economics and Statistics, 59, 406–414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Schoumaker, B., Mezger, C. et al. (2013). Sampling and computation weights in the MAFE surveys.Google Scholar
  39. Sørensen, N. N., & Olwig, K. F. (Eds.). (2002). Work and migration: Life and livelihoods in a globalizing world. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  40. Stark, O. (1988). On marriage and migration. European Journal of Population, 4, 23–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Stark, O. (1991). The migration of labour. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.Google Scholar
  42. Stark, O., & Lucas, R. E. B. (1985). Motivations to remit: Evidence from Botswana. The Journal of Political Economy, 93, 901–918.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Stark, O., & Lucas, R. E. B. (1988). Migration, remittances and the family. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 36, 465–481.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Sy, M. (1991). Migrations féminines selon les ethnies au Sénégal. In Conference on “Women, family and population”. Spontaneous papers/Union pour l’Etude de la Population Africaine (pp. 285–304). Ouagadougou, April 24–29 1991. Dakar: UEPA.Google Scholar
  45. Todaro, M. P. (1976). Internal migration in developing countries. Geneva: International Labour Office.Google Scholar
  46. Vause, S., & Toma, S. (2012). International migrations of Congolese and Senegalese women: New forms of autonomous mobility or persistence of family migration patterns. Comparative and multi-sited approaches to international migration. Paris: INED.Google Scholar
  47. Vázquez Silva, I. (2010). El impacto de la migración en las tareas de cuidado dentro de las familias senegalesas: ¿la emergencia de las “nueras transnacionales”?. Bilbao: VIII Congreso Vasco de Sociología y Ciencia Política.Google Scholar
  48. Wimmer, A., & Glick Schiller, N. (2002). Methodological nationalism and beyond: Nation-state building, migration and the social sciences. Global Networks, 2(4), 301–334.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Yamaguchi, K. (1991). Event history analysis. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pau Baizán
    • 1
    • 4
  • Cris Beauchemin
    • 2
  • Amparo González-Ferrer
    • 3
  1. 1.Universitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Institut National d’Études DémographiquesParis Cédex 20France
  3. 3.Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Centro de Ciencias Humanas y SocialesMadridSpain
  4. 4.Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avançats (ICREA)BarcelonaSpain

Personalised recommendations