Women from Asia are increasingly traversing borders to marry men in the Western world. This article presents ethnographic research focused on Thai women married to Danish men. The existing discourse portrays these Thai ”mail order brides” through a discourse of victimization. First, they are commonly portrayed as being uprooted and permanently alienated from Thailand. Second, they are seen as merely victims of Third World poverty. A third portrayal sees them as a contraband commodity in illegal human trafficking. As a result, they are seen as victims of simple male domination. This raises two socio-political problems. First, the discourse does not necessarily represent the Thai bride’s self-perception. Second, it fails to recognize how this group of women contributes to the global economy, as remittances from Asian women have become a vital strategy for Asian families, and a vital part of the economies of Asian countries of emigration. This article argues that transnational brides are not merely powerless victims, but global economic actors on a structurally confined stage. While broader global processes are crucial background factors, migration is a concrete action carried out by specific persons in a specific context. Therefore this article analyses the personal motives underlying these Thai women’s migration to Denmark. These motives include embracing socio-cultural family values while paradoxically rejecting more traditional Thai gender values.
"From Thailand with love: transnational marriage migration in the global care economy,"
Wagadu: A Journal of Transnational Women's & Gender Studies: Vol. 5:
1, Article 4.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.cortland.edu/wagadu/vol5/iss1/4