Sarah Scuzzarello has been awarded a Harry Kroto Fellowship by the University of Sussex to conduct a research visit at the Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia (RILCA) at Mahidol University, Thailand. The visit will enable her to develop a field of research that studies the intersections of gender, transnationalism and multicultural interactions by focussing on migrations from Europe to Thailand in collaboration with Sirijit Sunanta and other colleagues at RILCA.
In the proposed research, Sarah aims to engage critically with the strand of research on transnational migration in particular by focussing on the gendered underpinnings of flows and connections that constitute the lived experiences of transnational migrants. A gender approach on transnationalism will shed light on the power hierarchies underpinning transnational mobilities. Sarah proposes to develop a research agenda that studies the intersections of gender, multiculturalism and cultural interactions between Westerners and Thais that result from transnational migrations. In particular, the research agenda will address the following research questions:
* How does gender shape transnational migrations to Thailand and cultural relations between migrants and locals in Thailand?
* How do gender relations transform through transnational mobilities?
* How are representations of femininity and masculinity reproduced in pre- and post-migration imaginaries?
The proposed agenda has the potential to produce cutting-edge, innovative research. First, it will add to scholarly understandings of how transnational mobilities shape gender relations and of how people engage in transnational mobilities depending on their gender, class and ethnicity (see Yeoh and Ramdas 2014). Second, it will challenge the existing ethnocentric biases in the research that has mainly focused on migration in the North American context (see Bash et al 1994; Levitt 2011; Waldinger 2015).