Spirited Women Tell Their Stories: A Study of Bangladeshi Female
Husain, Abhar Rukh
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This dissertation draws on the stories of 34 Bangladeshi women who went to seven Middle Eastern countries, including United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Lebanon and Jordan, as temporary workers during 1995-2010. I interrogate their interactions with migration brokers and employers and offer a complex understanding of their migration journey. My understanding adds to the structural aspect of their migration journey by highlighting the social context of rural Bangladesh from where these women migrate. I argue a nuanced view of these womens engagement with migration brokers from their social and familial circles and their conduct with their employers in Middle East requires a critical consideration of Bangladeshi rural realities. Understanding their behaviour in terms of their rural origins leads to feminist insights into power attentive to social context. By linking a macro-structural lens of power to a feminist meso lens of power in this dissertation, I comprehend their situation with brokers and employers in a nuanced manner and complicate dominant ways of understanding their migration journey. My approach bridges a feminist critical understanding of power relations and a macro-structural understanding of power relations between women and other institutional actors, including migration brokers and employers in womens migration journey. This study generates feminist knowledge by utilizing the methodological approach of Grounded Theory. From a feminist epistemological point of view, this knowledge is particularly important as it is generated by marginalized/ disenfranchised Bangladeshi women and uses their otherwise unappreciated perspectives as the basis of knowledge creation.