Hadia Akhtar Khan

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Toronto, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9724

Approve Date

October 23, 2018

Project Title

Akhtar Khan, Hadia, U. of Toronto, Toronto, Canada - To aid research on 'The Social Life of Remittances: Revaluations of Social Reproduction in Rural Pakistan,' supervised by Dr. Tania Li

HADIA AKHTAR KHAN, then a graduate student at University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, was awarded funding in October 2018 to aid research on ‘The Social Life of Remittances: Revaluations of Social Reproduction in Rural Pakistan,’ supervised by Dr. Tania Li. Migrant joint families have amassed significant amounts of wealth through the ownership of convenience stores in Malaysia and ‘temporary’ marriages to Malaysian women. Men are able to migrate and still uphold honor in the village by leaving their Pashtun wives and children under the patriarchal protection of a brother within the joint family, which the migrant supports with remittances. This transnational ‘joint’ family enterprise, comprised of the convenience store and Malaysian family headed by the migrant in Malaysia, and the farm and family headed by the brother in Pakistan, is able to become upwardly mobile because of fraternal solidarity and multiple wives. On the one hand, this mutuality, care and compromise within the joint family allows it to accumulate assets under culturally and morally appropriate conditions. On the other, hierarchies, conflicts and extractions between family members animate the everyday and more eventful conflicts over who does what (labor) and who is owed what (entitlement) share in the fruits of family labor. This dissertation analyses family practices, meanings and sentiments of solidarity that generate and sustain upward mobility, and the fierce moral and social conflicts over labor, value and entitlements that divide families.