Men's migration and women's lives: Views from rural Armenia and Guatemala

Cecilia Menjívar, Victor Agadjanian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations


This study seeks to comparatively assess the consequences of men's migration for gender roles and relations in Armenia and Guatemala. We use 29 in-depth interviews conducted with women in Guatemala and 27 interviews conducted in Armenia, complemented with field observations. Results. Men's migration exerts diverse effects on their wives' lives, and these effects are mediated by the sociocultural milieu in which the women live and by the context in which the men generate incomes. As do other studies, we find that women take on added responsibilities when their partners migrate for work, but unlike most other studies, our data do not show that these new responsibilities significantly transform women's status and relationships. On balance, the division of labor established through the husbands' migration further reinforces gender inequality. Men's role as breadwinners and primary decisionmakers is further strengthened, as is women's subordinate position in the household.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1243-1262
Number of pages20
JournalSocial Science Quarterly
Issue number5
StatePublished - Dec 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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