Transnational Migration
Transnational Migration

Increasing interconnections between nation-states across borders have rendered the transnational a key tool for understanding our world. It has made particularly strong contributions to immigration studies and holds great promise for deepening insights into international migration.

This is the first book to provide an accessible yet rigorous overview of transnational migration, as experienced by family and kinship groups, networks of entrepreneurs, diasporas and immigrant associations. As well as defining the core concept, it explores the implications of transnational migration for immigrant integration and its relationship to assimilation. By examining its political, economic, social, and cultural dimensions, the authors capture the distinctive features of the new immigrant communities that have reshaped the ethno-cultural mix of receiving nations, including the US and Western Europe. Importantly, the book also examines the effects of transnationality on sending communities, viewing migrants as agents of political and economic development.

This systematic and critical overview of transnational migration perfectly balances theoretical discussion with relevant examples and cases, making it an ideal book for upper-level students covering immigration and transnational relations on sociology, political science, and globalization courses.

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  • March 2013
  • 210 pages
  • 154 x 218 mm / 6 x 9 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $72.75
  • 9780745649771
  • Paperback $26.00
  • 9780745649788
  • Open eBook $21.00
  • 9780745664545
Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgements viii

1 Three Transnationals: Transnationalization, Transnational Social Spaces and Transnationality 1

Cross-border migration and the need for a transnational perspective 5

Unpacking the transnational 7

Aim and structure of the book 17

2 Transnationality and Social Practices 27

Familial transnational practices 28

Socio-cultural transnational practices 32

Economic transnational practices 35

Political transnational practices 39

The significance of transnational practices 43

3 Conceptualizing Transnationalization and Transnational Social Spaces 46

Transnationalization in historical perspective 47

The concept of transnational social spaces 53

The durability of transnationalization 61

4 Transnationalization and Development 66

Three phases of the debate 68

Remittances and their role for family and kin 70

Transnational investment and business 74

Hometown associations and their contributions to community development 75

Transnational circulation of knowledge 80

Social remittances and their effects 84

5 Transnationality and the Models of Migrant Integration 88

Transnationalism as a model of integration 91

The relationship between transnationality and integration 95

Second-generation transnationality 102

Migrant associations as a means of integration and transnationalization 106

6 States and Citizens – Transnational Political Practices and Institutions 109

Citizenship: a conceptual sketch 111

The policies of citizenship: the case of dual citizenship 114

The politics of citizenship: citizens, diasporas and states 121

Transnational citizenship? 133

7 Transnational Methodology 135

Three methodological challenges for transnational analysis 136

Methods to address the three challenges 145

Capturing simultaneity 157

8 Transnationalizing Civil Society 159

Civil society and transnational social spaces 161

The relevance of development, social integration and citizenship for civil society 164

Civil society and the state 168

Civil society and the market 171

Civil society and the family 172

The role and function of migrant transnational social spaces for civil society 175

The signifi cance of a transnational approach for the social sciences 179

Notes 183

References 185

Index 203

About the Author
Thomas Faist is professor of transnational, development and migration studies at the Bielefeld University, Germany.

Margit Fauser is a researcher in the department of sociology at Bielefeld University, Germany.

Eveline Reisenauer is a researcher in the department of sociology at Bielefeld University, Germany.

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'Embraced by many and damned by others, the transnational perspective has become hugely influential. But it is in need of a clear and lucid synthesis. Here it is. This remarkably well-written and engaging book provides a critical, original, and theoretically stimulating overview of a process that is transforming societies across the world.'
Luis Eduardo Guarnizo, University of California, Davis

'A well-organized introduction to how social scientists should engage with the cross-border connections that many migrants maintain and with the role these ties possibly play for economic development, changing concepts of citizenship, and networks of civil society organizations. A must-read for anyone who approaches the subject with an analytical mind.'
Andreas Wimmer, University of California, Los Angeles

'This book addresses key concepts and controversies that have marked the emergence of the transnational migration paradigm. The authors assess the mundane transborder familial, religious, social, cultural, and political practices that sustain hope and opportunity in myriad corners of the world. Transnational Migration is a welcome intervention at the current moment. Rhetorics about failed integration are countered with astute analysis of the role of transnational social fields in a precarious world.'
Nina Glick Schiller, University of Manchester

"The book is clearly argued and is written in easily accessible language avoiding unnecessary jargon relatively well, and it can serve as an excellent introduction to contemporary migration research."
Political Studies Review

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