Education, Migration and Family Relations Between China and the UK: The Transnational One-Child Generation

Mengwei Tu
East China University of Science and Technology, China

Product Details
23 Oct 2020
Emerald Publishing Limited
216 pages - 152 x 229mm
Education, Migration and Family Relations between China and the UK: The Transnational One-Child Generation provides a fresh perspective on the understanding of transnational families, examining the one-child generation of Chinese migrants who came to the UK to study, and their parents who remain in China, separated from their only child. As these highly-educated, capital-bearing Chinese migrants continue to pursue their careers and establish families in the West, a deeply significant dilemma emerges: as the only child in the family, how do they balance their personal aspirations with responsibilities to their parents? 

This study is based on interviews conducted with the one-child generation of Chinese migrants in the UK and their parents in China. It charts the life course of these migrants, from their upbringing in China, to their decision to study overseas, and establish their lives abroad. Both children and parents reveal the human complexity that lies behind these choices regarding transnational mobility and immobility, temporal and spatial changes that have challenged the basis of traditional Chinese family values, which dominated intergenerational relations in China for more than two thousand years. 

Ultimately, this fascinating book demonstrates that the shifting multidimensional nature of an individual’s identity demands a re-examination of definitions of international students, migrants, and family.
1. China’s Modernisation: A Generational Leap 
2. Growing Up, Gender, and Education in China 
3. One-Child Migrants in the UK: The Decision-Making Process, Mobility Trajectory and Parental Involvement 
4. The One-Child Family as a Transnational Dynamic Field: Money, Childcare and Aspiration 
5. Between Space and Time: Long-Term Home-Making in Britain and in China
Mengwei Tu is Lecturer in Sociology at the East China University of Science and Technology, China. Prior to her post in China she completed her PhD at the University of Kent, UK. She has conducted extensive research among middle-class Chinese migrants in the UK and has published in international journals. Her current research involves overseas returnees in China, and the circulation of people, capital and talent associated with family and education.
'This is a nuanced and beautifully written ethnography of the experiences of Chinese students in the United Kingdom. The vivid, engaging stories Tu Mengwei tells about their lives will give readers a deep understanding of their complex relationships with the United Kingdom, China, and their parents who remain in China.' - Vanessa L. Fong, Olin Professor in Asian Studies, Amherst College, USA

'This is one of the most engaging, beautifully written books I have read in while. It represents such an important piece of scholarship on migration and educational trajectories between the UK and China. The perspective on the complex gender relations and expectations within Chinese families is particularly illuminating. This book will undoubtedly have a wide readership and will be of interest to anyone working at the intersections of migration, transnationalism and education and the Chinese family.' - Johanna L. Waters, Professor of Human Geography, University College London

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