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Migration and Family Life Between Congo and Europe

  • Cris Beauchemin
  • Kim Caarls
  • Jocelyn Nappa
  • Valentina Mazzucato
  • Bruno Schoumaker
  • José Mangalu
Chapter

Abstract

In this chapter, we use the MAFE data to study the relationships between migration and family in the context of DR Congo and Europe. Taking advantage of the multi-sited nature of the data, we show that transnational families are quite common. Two thirds of all households from the region of Kinshasa declared having migrant members abroad (whatever their place of residence). Conversely, using the data collected in Europe, we show that a quarter of Congolese migrants in Belgium and UK still had close relatives in Congo at the time of the survey (spouse or children). Adopting a longitudinal approach, we show that living apart across borders is quite often a long-lasting arrangement for Congolese couples, as well as for their children. Results also show that reunification is not a one-way phenomenon: families also reunify in the origin country, when the migrants return. Results suggest that transnational families result from a mix of personal choices and structural constraints.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cris Beauchemin
    • 1
  • Kim Caarls
    • 2
    • 3
  • Jocelyn Nappa
    • 4
    • 5
  • Valentina Mazzucato
    • 3
  • Bruno Schoumaker
    • 5
  • José Mangalu
    • 4
  1. 1.Institut national d’études démographiques (INED)ParisFrance
  2. 2.Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute, KNAW/ RUGThe HagueThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Maastricht UniversityMaastrichtThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Département des sciences de la population et du développementUniversité de KinshasaKinshasa, DRCongo
  5. 5.Centre de recherche en démographieUniversité Catholique de LouvainLouvain-la-NeuveBelgium

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