Pinay on the Prairies
Filipino Women and Transnational Identities
For many Filipinos, one word – kumusta, how are you – is all it takes to forge a connection with a stranger anywhere in the world. In Canada’s Prairie provinces, this connection has inspired community building, and created both national and transnational identities for the women who identify as Pinay. This book is the first to look beyond traditional metropolitan hubs of settlement to explore the migration of Filipino women in Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan. Based on interviews with first-generation immigrant Filipino women and temporary foreign workers, this book explores how the shared experience of migration forms the basis for new identities, communities, transnational ties, and multiple levels of belonging in Canada. It also considers the complex cultural, economic, and political factors that motivate Filipino women to leave their country and family in search of better opportunities in a strange land and the welcome that awaits them in Canada, where multiculturalism plays a large role. A groundbreaking look at the experience of Filipino women in Canada, Bonifacio’s work is simultaneously an exploration of feminism, migration, and diaspora in a global era.
This book will appeal to students and scholars with an interest in feminism, migration, and diaspora, or the study of Filipino culture in Canada.
There has been surprisingly little research about Filipinas’ lived experience in the Canadian Prairies – even though Winnipeg has the highest concentration of Filipinos as percentage of the entire visible-minority population, and Calgary and Edmonton are among the top cities hosting new Filipino immigrants. Pinay on the Prairies provides a nuanced understanding of Filipinas’ ways of belonging within their newly adopted cities, including their forms of civic engagement as immigrant women, mothers, workers, and citizens.
Pinay on the Prairies develops a rounded portrayal of Filipina experiences in Canada, emphasizing the agency and strength of character of these women. Bonifacio integrates literature on Philippine political economy, culture, and migration, as well as immigrant settlement and transnationalism. It is relatively rare that writers have this level of awareness of the migration process at "both ends."
1 Gender, Migration, and Feminism
2 Pinay Migration
3 Welcoming Prairies
4 Making Meanings: Identities and Integration
5 Building Bridges: Activism and Community Engagement
6 Vested Transnationalism
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