Conclusion: Moving beyond the Postmodern Trap of Transnational Studies
Hometown transnationalism has been addressed and construed in this book as a collective response that emigrants bring to the question “what is it to be a villager”. This response has evolved over the changing conditions induced by their migration and settlement trajectory. And the surge of collective remittances that started in the 1990s is the latest avatar of this effort to assert an existential continuity where there is nothing but change. This response, it has been argued, has been elicited by a mix of events whose combination became effective from the 1990s onward. It is the outcome of a convergence between decentralisation policies, public discourses, villagers’ expectations and migrant identity processes. The book unfolds at length each element of this arithmetic of hometown transnationalism. The initial conditions of the migration act delineate the grammatical structures that have underwritten the phenomenon ever since: the moral geography that defines the village as a centrality, and emigration countries as both lands of fascination and corruption; initial gifts of departure and arrival that seal the status of village expatriate; the three-fold set of expectations and duties as an individual, a family member and a village member… This initial grammar has been further complexified by the introduction of new roles acquired in the place of arrival in their place of work, of activism or at home.
KeywordsMigration Arena Tempo Sonal Hone
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