Analyzing Dependence and Autonomy in Old Age
Women, Migration, and Aging in the Americas analyzes how immigrant women have coped with life after they settled in the Americas, from the 19th–21st centuries. It explores their empowerment processes, the type of gender inequalities they faced, and their destinies as they aged; whether they resided in the destination country throughout their lives or returned to their home country.
The book shows that many immigrant women were able to secure their wellbeing autonomously as they aged, after they retired, and/or when they became widows. The authors offer new research material on immigrant women’s aging experiences, their innovative conclusions contrasting with the historiography that has often argued that aging immigrant women were dependent upon their husbands and later their children (especially their daughters) for survival. They consider inter- and intra-continental female migration and compare immigrant women’s aging experiences, analyzing diverse groups who migrated within the Americas or from other continents (Europe and Africa in particular) to the Americas. Each chapter analyzes the issue using different sources, methods, and approaches to measure the correlation between these women’s geographical, cultural, ethnic, and social backgrounds and their life experiences as women, wives, mothers, and aging widows. The authors show that many of the immigrant women assumed power, responsibilities, autonomy, and perhaps independence within the household, and therefore could make decisions for themselves and their families.
This book will be of interest to researchers, scholars, and graduate students of migration studies, gender studies, women’s studies, care studies, history, sociology, and social anthropology.