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Multinational Maids
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Multinational Maids offers an in-depth investigation into the international migrations of Filipino and Indonesian migrant domestic workers. The author taps on her rigorous study of more than 1,200 subjects' migration trajectories to reveal how these migrants work in a series of overseas countries to improve their lives and, in some cases, seek permanent residence in another country. Challenging the portrayal of Asian migrant domestic workers as victims of globalization, Multinational Maids reveals migrants' agency and strategic thinking under conditions of constraint. At the market level, the establishment of guestworker programmes for migrant domestic workers in multiple countries has created a global labor market. A transnational diaspora shapes migrants' evolving destination imaginaries, while manpower recruitment and placement agencies create transnational mobility structures. In addition, differing destination hierarchies and degrees of access to resources lead to the adoption of divergent stepwise trajectories. Written in an accessible manner, Multinational Maids appeals to migration scholars, policymakers, activists and students.


'Multinational Maids wonderfully weaves together the lived experience of domestic workers, the dynamics of global labour markets, and new frontiers in migration theory.'

Jørgen Carling - Peace Research Institute Oslo

‘Anju Mary Paul offers a highly accessible and insightful study of global migration that is ambitious in scale and rich in detail. Drawing from large-scale surveys and interviews, Multinational Maids draws linkages between global locations ranging from Singapore to Saudi, and illuminates the processes, patterns, ambitions, imaginaries and accidents of fate, that lead some migrant workers to seek ever-better migratory destinations.'

Nicole Constable - University of Pittsburgh

'… domestic workers make decisions, gather resources, and deal with constraints to access the best possible destinations in the global labor market. Based on multi-sited and multi-method approaches comparing Filipino and Indonesian domestic workers, the findings show how, following their first migration, the search for their dream destination can take migrant domestic workers to more than one destination country over several migration attempts. The search is fraught with uncertainties and difficulties, but as this impressive work concludes, 'What this book demonstrates is the drive and ingenuity of temporary labor migrants long before they have reached their end-destination'.'

Marla Asis - Scalabrini Migration Center, Philippines

'This book is an important examination of contemporary international migration, as it presents a necessary and timely challenge to the prevailing paradigms of permanent settlement and binational approach to transnationalism. … this is an important book that not only challenges dominant paradigms in migration studies but, more importantly, invites further theorizations of the under-studied phenomenon of multinational migration.'

Maria Cecilia Hwang Source: Sojourn: Journal of Social Issues in Southeast Asia

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