Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Translocal identities : an ethnographic account of the political economy of childhood transitions in northern Thailand
Author: Vogler, Pia Maria
ISNI:       0000 0001 2054 7634
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2010
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Please try the link below.
Access from Institution:
This thesis examines Karen childhood transitions in a context of expansion of the cash economy, formal education and modern institutions. Since the 1960s, Thai state development has had a significant impact on the organisation of work and learning among highland populations. Today, household economies largely depend on cash income and children aspire towards an adult life in which paid work is central. Formal education is highly valued as a means to reach this goal. Children often migrate for education to better-resourced locations and access scholarships provided by national and international institutions. On the basis of 12 months of ethnographic fieldwork undertaken between October 2007 and September 2009, the thesis seeks to understand the effects of globalisation on politically and economically marginalized children in northern Thailand through the lens of changing modes of production and learning. Findings indicate that children’s migration for education reflects broad political economic inequalities among Karen households as well as between them and mainstream Thai lowland populations. International dimensions of unequal relations are revealed in local peoples’ collective negotiations with Japanese and Catholic Christian NGOs. Although socio-cultural constructs like ‘gender’, ‘generation’, and ‘ethnicity’ shape Karen childhoods, this study found that their economic and political status are more fundamental in shaping all aspects of their social lives, including their socio-cultural identities. Childhood transitions emerge as multidimensional learning processes towards mastery of ‘translocal identities’, the skill to manage identities and relationships across multiple spaces and institutions. This is a culturally valued skill evidenced when minority children tactfully negotiate differing modes of compliance, resistance, and adaptation, especially in the domains of work and education. Thus, children participate in the moulding of local versions of the modern political economy of northern Thailand.
Supervisor: Boyden, J. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Asia ; Economic and Social History ; History of Asia & Far East ; History of childhood ; Anthropology ; Comparative and international education ; Early and Child learning ; Children and youth ; Ethnic minorities and ethnicity ; Thailand ; childhood ; transitions ; anthropology ; migration