Migrating capital and habitus: The extended space of female transnational migrants

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Abstract

Adopting the Bourdieusian concept of capital, this study explores capital transformation and habitus recalibration among professional migrant women in Hong Kong. This study shows the fluidity and plurality of capital conversion within the interplay between gender, power relations, and broader social and neoliberal discourse. The findings indicate that the smooth conversion of different forms of capital requires the resources and capital acquired and accumulated in other places to be locally validated, and that the extent to which linguistic and cultural resources can be validated depends on migrants' social-economic ability, and how they define the boundaries of migration-specific capital. It is also found that classed power relations play a part in constituting networks, which in turn influence habitus recalibration. This study shows the process of capital conversion and new habitus establishment cannot be simply reduced to individual agency, and that wider historical, institutional, social, and political factors play a shaping role. Copyright © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1833-1853
JournalEthnic and Racial Studies
Volume43
Issue number10
Early online dateOct 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Citation

Gu, M. M., & Lee, J. C.-K. (2020). Migrating capital and habitus: The extended space of female transnational migrants. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 43(10), 1833-1853. doi: 10.1080/01419870.2019.1671596

Keywords

  • Habitus
  • Capital
  • Female transnational migrants
  • Extended space
  • Hong Kong

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