Mobility, social reproduction and triple minority status: young Senegalese-Americans’ experiences of growing up transnationally

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A growing body of literature explores how transnational migration from Africa to Western countries affects childrearing practices. While the motivations and constraints underpinning parents’ decisions to raise children partly or entirely in the ‘homeland’ are fairly well documented, much less is known about young people’s experiences of transnational mobility and about its relationship to social reproduction. Drawing on data collected over 14 months among Senegalese migrant communities in New York and New Jersey, and in Islamic schools receiving migrants’ children in Dakar, Senegal, this paper explores how educational stints in the ‘homeland’ equip young people with cultural and religious resources to deal with the challenges of living in the US as part of a triple minority as Blacks, immigrants, and Muslims. At the same time, homeland stays produce a series of new vulnerabilities, as young people struggle to adjust to an unfamiliar language and disciplinary regime in the US.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)629-641
Number of pages13
JournalChildren’s Geographies
Issue number6
Early online date26 Mar 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Islamic education
  • social reproduction
  • transnational families
  • transnational migration
  • West Africa
  • BACK

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