Multi Facetness Of Transnationalism In Sociology Sociology Essay Example
Multi Facetness Of Transnationalism In Sociology Sociology Essay Example

Multi Facetness Of Transnationalism In Sociology Sociology Essay Example

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  • Pages: 4 (1026 words)
  • Published: August 18, 2017
  • Type: Research Paper
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Globalization has made multinational flows of people a regular occurrence.

Traditionally, migration involved moving between countries with distinct national boundaries. Appadurai (1996) argued that cultural forces drew people towards smaller-scale groups that were more familiar and interesting, making large-scale communities less common. It was believed that once migrants settled in a new country, they would disconnect from their home country and assimilate into the new culture. However, advancements in technology and transportation have resulted in overlapping communities. This means that international migration is no longer a linear process but rather a dynamic one occurring across multiple locations. The concept of "transnationalism" acknowledges that immigrants live their lives in several countries and must navigate the constraints and demands of each.

The text discusses the social patterns, resource exchange, and institutional associations that connect migrants with their places of origin across national borders. In t


he past, bridging cultural gaps between socially and spatially separated groups was a difficult and costly endeavor, due to limitations in time, distance, and technology for the exchange of resources. However, advancements in transportation and communication technologies have significantly altered the immigration experience, allowing for easier and faster multinational connections. Telecommunications and transportation play a crucial role in facilitating the process of migration by enabling the expansion, intensification, and acceleration of multinational connections.

As a result, the complexities of personal and group identities and connections are increasingly intertwined with societal contexts in more than one location. This complexity adds multiple dimensions to the concept of transnationalism, encompassing personal and contextual aspects, as well as societal, cultural, economic, and political factors. Multinational immigrants also come in various forms, further contributing to the multifaceted nature of transnationalism. These

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immigrants have diverse networks, commitments, activities, and ways of life that span different locations and involve social, political, and economic relations across multiple societies. Due to their varied reasons for migration, they become transitional migrants belonging to different "classes and racial dimensions" (Pedraza, 2006: P.49).

Four categories can be used to classify early multinational migrators: victim migrators, labour migrators, trade migrators, and imperial migrators. In today's global economy, economic and political migrants have become active participants that have significant impacts on both host countries and their countries of origin. These migrants influence the economy through remittals, taxes, levies, and other forms of appropriation. This is a result of late capitalism, where industrialized nations rely on cheap labor and underdeveloped nations depend on the remittals sent by their workers. For example, in many Latin American countries, immigrant remittals represent millions or even billions of dollars per year, making it the second or third largest source of foreign exchange and crucial for the survival of these societies (Pedraza, 2006: P48).

Politically, these migrants focus on influencing the internal affairs or foreign policies of their host countries or countries of origin, as well as improving the societal standing of their migration groups within the host nation. These migrants establish themselves in a new community and maintain various social relationships that span across different national and community levels, impacting various realms such as politics, economics, society, and culture. Transnationalism involves maintaining connections with pre-migration networks, cultures, and capital. According to Handlin (1973), transnational migrants experience a state of crisis due to being uprooted and existing in extreme circumstances before establishing new roots.

During migration, significant changes occur in societal life, and migrators

have to confront disparities in multinational moralities and the distribution of different forms of resources between migrators and non-migrants. As a result of the complex nature of multinational lives, migrators are compelled to utilize social networks. By expanding, reconfiguring, and activating these networks across national borders, families can make the most efficient use of labor and resources in various environments and thrive in situations of economic uncertainty and subordination. In other words, by utilizing social networks beyond national borders and leveraging bicultural or bilingual skills, migrators may be able to overcome structural disadvantages in the host society. These collective multinational family strategies are advantageous in preserving and enhancing the social and economic status of multinational migrators' families. For example, early Chinese migrators in Canada had a smoother transition during the socialization stage and adapted more quickly to the challenges of migration due to the presence of existing Chinese communities.

Because of the interaction between self-evaluation and societal individuality, Chinese migrators had an advantageous position in integrating into the host society (Beiser ; Hyman, 1997). Additionally, migrants also establish business activities that are based on and foster multinational social relationships. Immigrant-run multinational companies are thriving, demonstrating the numerous connections between their home and host countries. These immigrants not only have nostalgic feelings towards their home country but also actively maintain relationships with it in order to fully utilize the global economy. Moreover, transnationalism should not be seen as a static concept but as a dynamic process that involves ongoing dialogues and mutual influences.

Transnationalism refers to the remodeling of space and identity that occurs when migrants strive to reconcile their spatial needs with their individuality. This process involves

managing both the stresses experienced before and after migration, including depressive feelings, physical pain, and fear (Beiser & Hyman, 1997). The movement of capital is also closely intertwined with transnationalism, as multinational corporations play a crucial role in shaping global practices. Cultural reproduction is another key aspect of transnationalism. In young individuals, elements of culture and identity are often deliberately chosen, shaped, and expanded upon from multiple heritages, leading to the development of cultural bifocality and pluralism (Pedraza, 2006: P45).

The concept of transnationalism encompasses various elements such as political battles fought by international non-government organisations and the formation of societal networks that span across borders. These networks, including communities and multinational webs, provide ongoing support in terms of material resources, financial assistance, information sharing, and emotional aid (Menjivar, 1997: P2). In summary, transnationalism is a more comprehensive explanation of global migration compared to inter-nationalism. It goes beyond solely focusing on host countries or countries of origin and includes multiple locations, different forms of migration, and economic, social, cultural, and political dimensions. Transnationalism recognizes the existence of multinational ties and acknowledges its global impacts. It serves as a platform for dialogue among multiple locations and harnesses potential opportunities brought about by globalization.

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