Migration and Gender among Mexican Women


Parrado, Emilio A., and Chenoa A. Flippen. 2005. “Migration and Gender among Mexican Women.” American Sociological Review 70 (4): 606–32.

Authors: Emilio A. Parrado, Chenoa A. Flippen


Despite their importance to women's empowerment and migrant adaptation more generally, the social and cultural processes that determine how gender relations and expectations evolve during the process of migration remain poorly understood. In this article, data from a survey conducted in Durham, North Carolina and four sending communities in Mexico are used to examine how the structures of labor, power, and emotional attachments within the family vary by migration and U.S. residency, women's human capital endowments, household characteristics, and social support. Using both quantitative and qualitative information, the main finding of the study is that the association between migration and gender relations is not uniform across different gender dimensions. The reconstruction of gender relations within the family at the place of destination is a dynamic process in which some elements brought from communities of origin are discarded, others are modified, and still others are reinforced. Results challenge the expectation that migrant women easily incorporate the behavior patterns and cultural values of the United States and illustrate the importance of selective assimilation for understanding the diversity of changes in gender relations that accompany migration.

Keywords: empowerment, gender relations, assimilation

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Migration, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Households Regions: Americas, North America Countries: Mexico, United States of America

Year: 2005

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