Whether Migration Leads to Emancipation? A Critique of Women Empowerment among the Left behind Families in Doaba Region of Rural Punjab (India)

*Atinder Pal Kaur , Punjab Agricultural University

Background: - Migration becomes survival strategy for left behind family and remittances played a positive role. The migration of individual or male members usually ushers in certain changes in the left behind families and especially to the women’s position, those who reside without their migrant husbands. Information related to the factors that give rise to disparities in social position of women of left behind families is limited. This paper aims to analyze how International migration of men has affected the position of left behind women in rural areas of Doaba region. Methodology: - Data was collected through case studies, semi-structured interviews and participant observation among 45 migrants’ households. Result: - Migration of their husbands result in temporary increase in number of tasks and responsibilities of women. These new roles are often perceived as burden hence, should not be confused with emancipation, where latter means making independent choices against prevailing gender norms. Conclusion: - In traditional “patriarchal structure” women try to balance their social position. Significant improvements in the position of women have come because of socio-cultural changes. Thus, migration can be said to play an indirect role in this process.

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 Presented in Session P3. Poster Session Migration, Economics, Environment, Methods, History and Policy