International Conference on TRANSACTED INTIMACY:
Political Economy of International Marriages in Asia
Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore
14–15 October 2010
Asia Research Institute Seminar Room, National University of Singapore (Bukit Timah Campus)
469A Tower Block, Level 10, Bukit Timah Rd
The rapid increase in international marriage across several countries within Asia in recent decades has led to vigorous scholarship on cross-border marriage migration and the formation of transnational families in Asia. Earlier studies focused on structural analyses placing marriage migration and marital motivations at the nexus of globalised economic systems and local marriage markets. More recent scholarship has shifted attention to questions of gendered and ethnicised citizenship, in which female marriage migrants are also constructed on the basis of gendered identities as biological and social reproducers and carers, who not only fail to contribute to the economic development of the host societies, but also create a burden by draining welfare resources.
This conference attempts to bring the economic back into discussions of the political, cultural and social processes that shape the contours of international marriage as a phenomenon. By focusing on the political economy of international marriages, this conference not only interrogates the political, economic and social structures in which love and intimacy are embodied, but also links intimacy with other domains of experiences such as work, gender relations and transnational family. It aims at:
• challenging the policy assumptions and dominant perceptions that marriage immigrants are filial daughters and/or victims of patriarchy, dependent and draining welfare resources of host societies by emphasizing their roles as economic actors;
• using economic transactions and relations as an entry point to understanding the power relations of actors involved, as well as the different family/kinship systems that shape marriage migrants’ positions and negotiation strategies;
• advancing the development of theories on gender and migration by linking yet differentiating women’s labour and marriage migration. This includes exploring how theories of transnational families can be applied to marriage migration and how these theories can be advanced.
We welcome papers that address one or more of the following topics:
1) political economy of marriage migration and integration policies;
2) commercially arranged marriage;
3) marriage migrants’ access to paid work and informal economy;
4) work, family and social support;
5) remittances and social remittances.
For a detailed description of these topics, please refer to the website.
Paper proposals should include a title and a 500-word abstract. A short biography should also be submitted on the attached form by 10 March 2010.
Please submit and address all applications and enquiries to Ms Valerie Yeo (firstname.lastname@example.org). Successful applicants will be notified by end of February 2010 and will be required to send in a completed paper (5000-6000 words) by 1 October 2010. Preference will be given to papers that profile new research, fit with the core panel ideas and complement other papers.
Dr Melody Chia-Wen Lu
Prof Brenda Yeoh
Dr Chee Heng Leng
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