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Living abroad and returning home: young Indian migrants in London and in Gujarat

17th May 2012 2pm-4pm, University of Southampton 58/1007

Mario Rutten, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Amsterdam

This special seminar will start with a screening of Prof Mario Rutten's anthropological documentary on Indian young people living in London. The title of the documentary is 'Living Like a Common Man'. Following the documentary from 3pm-4pm, Prof Rutten will deliver a presentation about the research, including a questions and answers session. The abstract for Prof. Rutten's seminar is as follows: Based on long-term research in London and Gujarat, I examine the contradictory migration experiences of Indian middle-class youth who moved abroad on a student or temporary work visa, and who recently returned to their home village in Gujarat. Like many of their peers in developing countries, they dreamed of going to the West to earn money, to study and to get experience in a foreign country to improve their prospects at home. Once abroad, however, they ended up in low-status, semi-skilled jobs to cover their expenses, and lived in small guesthouses crammed with newly arrived migrants. Part of these temporary migrants manage to extend their visa and to apply for permanent residency, while others return to their home region after several years. Why did these youngsters leave India and go abroad, and what do they and their families get by moving abroad? Why do some of them come back to stay in India and what are their experiences after returning to their home village?

Download Presentation File 1 (wmv format)