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Families of migrants from post-Soviet states: between homeland and Russia

Research Article

Anastasia Y. Tolmacheva Candidate of Historical Sciences
Institute of Sociology of FCTAS RAS, Moscow, Russia
nastja-tolmacheva@rambler.ru
ORCID ID=0000-0002-0288-5629
Families of migrants from post-Soviet states: between homeland and Russia.
Vestnik instituta sotziologii. 2022. Vol. 13. No. 3. P. 49-69

The article was prepared with the support of the Programme of fundamental and applied sscientific research "Ethnocultural Diversity of Russian Society and Strengthening the All-Russian Identity", 2020-2022.

Дата поступления статьи: 22.09.2022
Topic: Migration and identity

For citation:
Tolmacheva A. Y. Families of migrants from post-Soviet states: between homeland and Russia. Vestnik instituta sotziologii. 2022. Vol. 13. No. 3. P. 49-69
DOI: https://doi.org/10.19181/vis.2022.13.3.830. EDN: PGADOO




Abstract

The article is based on sociological surveys conducted in spring 2017 and autumn 2020. It examines the intra-family relations of migrants who came to Russia from the post-Soviet countries (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Ukraine). Particular attention is paid to the study of the life of migrants and their relatives, who, as a result of various life circumstances, found themselves separated by state borders. Migration models of the foreigners moving to Russia with their families, including minor children, are considered as well.

Based on the obtained data, it was revealed that transnational communication is retained to a greater extent by foreigners who initially do not plan to change their place of residence and permanently reside in Russia. This group of migrants is more involved in the life of the extended family in the country of origin. Among all groups of migrants, visitors from the countries of Central Asia stand out. They are the ones who most often come to Russia alone, while actively building social interaction with the family left at home (they regularly communicate via mobile, and send money back home or bring it themselves). Their purpose is to earn money for a higher standard of living in their country of origin. Whereas visitors who intend to stay in Russia permanently, more often live together with their close relatives and maintain less transnational contacts. However, it should be taken into account that migrants' plans for living in Russia may change depending on life situations, changing in turn the nature of transnational interaction.

Migration to Russia with minor children is considered as a separate subject, since in these conditions, migrant parents and their children are forced to face certain difficulties (for example, the inclusion of children in the Russian education system, mastering the Russian language by children, etc.), that require significant material, physical and emotional costs.

Keywords

migrant, family and single migration, post-Soviet countries, transnationalism

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