Religion, Return Migration and Change in an Emigration Country
Coșciug Anatolie (2019) Religion, return migration and change in an emigration country. In: Anghel RG, Fauser M, Boccagni P (eds) Transnational return and social change. Social hierarchies, cultural capital and colelctive identities. Anthem Press: London
19 Pages Posted: 1 Jun 2020
Date Written: 2019
This chapter explores how religion, as a form of collective identity, can be mobilized and changed by Romanian return migrants. After many years of strictly controlled mobility during the communist regime, Romanians could at last freely emigrate outside the country. With a stock of 3–4 million people, the Romanian migration is considered today one of the largest in Europe. Many of Romania’s migrants are involved in various transnational, circular and seasonal forms of migration (Anghel et al. 2016; Matichescu et al. 2017). After years of worsening socioeconomic context in destination countries and an improving climate in Romania, Romania is experiencing an increasing ongoing (transnational) return of migrants (Martin and Radu 2012; Anghel and Coșciug 2018). Conceptually speaking, there is little research unfolding the role of religion and religious identity among migrants upon return, even though it is important to understand returnees’ ways of aligning with or against pre-existing social groups and broader categories of belonging to better grasp their contribution to social change back home.
Keywords: Return migration, return entrepreneurship, migration-social change nexus, collective identity, religion
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