Migrant Domestic Work and Changes in the Ideas of Childcare Articles uri icon

publication date

  • October 2011

start page

  • 739

end page

  • 749


  • 5


  • 42

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0047-2328


  • The development of care-giving as an international resource, and the consequent generalization of migrant domestic work, has led to new ways and possibilities of family care. The ideal ways of caring are culturally and historically constructed, and the social changes of the last decaces have given rise to new approaches to care. Care has become a resource with no national boundaries which has resulted in new family structures, perceptions of motherhood, and ways of organizing social reproductive tasks, both for the migrant and native families. Research done in Spain shows that there has been an expansion in the paid domestic sector and, therefore, changes in the approach to childcare in both of the families involved: the native employer's and the migrant employee's The idea of intensive care in the mother-child relation no longer constitutes the only desirable model, as care has evolved from a "time spent together" to a matter of emotional and social guidance. The strategies used by the actors involved in these new forms of doing motherhood, nevertheless, vary according to national origins and access to social and economic resources. Differences between natives and migrant families can be found in relation to the managing of tine devoted to children, as well as to the distribution of maternal responsibilities.