Rethinking stories with transnational mothers in the context of international study

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Abstract

Women who migrate for the purpose of postgraduate study often have to negotiate the complex and conflicting roles of being a transnational mother and an international stu-dent. Despite recognition that gender is a central organising principle of migration and transnational life, existing research with international students rarely offers a gendered exploration. Consequently, the mothering stories of international students remain largely absent from existing literature. This paper draws on the narratives of transnational moth-ers in the context of postgraduate international study in order to enable feminist theoris-ing about motherhood and mothering to evolve. The analysis emerges from the different ways in which mothers reproduce, negotiate, contest and diversify narratives of ‘good mothering’. Rethinking stories of transnational mothering allows us to hear about and value a diversity of mothers’ lives, so these mothers do not have to inhabit the margins and periphery of stories of either motherhood or international student life.
LanguageEnglish
Pages17-24
Number of pages8
JournalWomen's Studies International Forum
Volume72
Early online date23 Nov 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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student
motherhood
moth
gender
post-graduate studies
narrative
migration
Values
analysis
woman

Cite this

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title = "Rethinking stories with transnational mothers in the context of international study",
abstract = "Women who migrate for the purpose of postgraduate study often have to negotiate the complex and conflicting roles of being a transnational mother and an international stu-dent. Despite recognition that gender is a central organising principle of migration and transnational life, existing research with international students rarely offers a gendered exploration. Consequently, the mothering stories of international students remain largely absent from existing literature. This paper draws on the narratives of transnational moth-ers in the context of postgraduate international study in order to enable feminist theoris-ing about motherhood and mothering to evolve. The analysis emerges from the different ways in which mothers reproduce, negotiate, contest and diversify narratives of ‘good mothering’. Rethinking stories of transnational mothering allows us to hear about and value a diversity of mothers’ lives, so these mothers do not have to inhabit the margins and periphery of stories of either motherhood or international student life.",
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AB - Women who migrate for the purpose of postgraduate study often have to negotiate the complex and conflicting roles of being a transnational mother and an international stu-dent. Despite recognition that gender is a central organising principle of migration and transnational life, existing research with international students rarely offers a gendered exploration. Consequently, the mothering stories of international students remain largely absent from existing literature. This paper draws on the narratives of transnational moth-ers in the context of postgraduate international study in order to enable feminist theoris-ing about motherhood and mothering to evolve. The analysis emerges from the different ways in which mothers reproduce, negotiate, contest and diversify narratives of ‘good mothering’. Rethinking stories of transnational mothering allows us to hear about and value a diversity of mothers’ lives, so these mothers do not have to inhabit the margins and periphery of stories of either motherhood or international student life.

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