Aging and Migration: Anthropological Investigations of Care and Responsibility

AAA (American Anthropology Association) Conference, December 3-7, 2014 Washington, DC.

Aging and Migration: Anthropological Investigations of Care and Responsibility

Sunday, December 7, 2014: 10:00 AM-11:45 AM

Novel practices, regimes, technologies, economies and socialities of care and responsibility are emerging from the shifting relationship between aging and migration. These new modalities and expectations of care are gaining increased interest in anthropology. This panel brings together scholars who explore this complex intersection of aging and migration in diverse transnational and socio-cultural contexts, including Austria, Bosnia, Tanzania, Ecuador, Suriname, Netherlands, Niger, Mali, the Caribbean and the United States.  We are particularly interested in questions, notions and effects of transnational responsibility; competing ideas of personhood; morality and “good aging;” social security; and economies of care as they materialize in these diverse yet converging contexts of aging, migration and care.  We understand care as a multi-facetted phenomenon that incorporates not only medical but also emotional, social, moral and economic aspects, which may be provided at proximity or from a geographical distance. Our papers are ethnographic grounded and theoretically guided, and they address various facets of the proposed intersection including ambivalence among aging labor immigrants; neoliberalism in relation to elderly’s subjectivity and sovereignty; emerging transnational “migrants of privilege;” the ideas of “healthy” and “successful” aging among more privileged populations; intergenerational relationships in the context of (forced) movement; and aging-related experiences of personal and systemic abandonment. The panellists hope to continue their conversations beyond the AAA event, and publish these papers in a special issues of a journal or an edited volume.

10:00 AM
Migrants of Privilege:  American Retirees and the Imaginaries of Ecuadorian Care Work
Ann Miles (Western Michigan University and Western Michigan University)

10:15 AM
Late Life Choices: Feelings of Ambivalence Among Aging Labour Immigrants
Monika Palmberger (Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity)

10:30 AM
“Where Were They until Now?” Aging, Care and Abandonment in a Bosnian Town
Azra Hromadzic (Syracuse University)

10:45 AM
Where Home Is Not the Same: Emerging Notions of Reciprocity, Dependency, and Concepts of Person/Self in Tuareg Intergenerational Experiences of Migration
Susan J Rasmussen (University of Houston)

11:00 AM
Who Cares? Ageing, Transnational Care Arrangements and the Question of Morality
Yvon Van Der Pijl (Utrecht University)

11:15 AM
“I Do Not Expect to Become frail” – Transnational Aging Experiences from a Civil Servants Milieu of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
Andrea Patricia Grolimund (University of Basel)

11:30 AM
Michele R Gamburd (Portland State University)