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Book presentation "Mothers on the move: Reproducing belonging between Africa and Europe"

Jul 20, 2017 | 06:00 PM - 07:30 PM

The project C03 ‘Embodied Belonging’ (SFB Affective Societies) and the Arbeitskreis Medical Anthropology (Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology) cordially invite you to “Mothers on the Move: Reproducing Belonging between Africa and Europe” by Prof. Pamela Feldman-Savelsberg

This presentation introduces a new book based on fieldwork in Berlin (and discussions in the AK Medical Anthropology, Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology). Mothers on the Move tells the story of Cameroonian migrants in Berlin through the lives of women who navigate belonging through birthing and caring for children. It explores the social strategies and community resources mothers mobilize when facing dilemmas engendered by migration. The ties Cameroonian women build are shaped by reproductive successes and insecurities experienced when migrant mothers pursue their ideal modern Cameroonian family while balancing the demands of life in Berlin. To have and keep their children, Cameroonian mothers switch on and off emotionally-laden network ties with husbands, kin, co-ethnics, co-nationals, and German state and NGO workers. These networks require careful management, simultaneously facilitating the exchange of support and goods while contributing to women’s insecurity through the possibility of gossip and exposure to the “shadow” of state regulations.


Pamela Feldman-Savelsberg is Broom Professor of Social Demography and Anthropology at Carleton College, Minnesota, USA. She is the author most recently of Mothers on the Move: Reproducing Belonging between Africa and Europe (Chicago, 2016) and Migranten, Recht, und Identität: Afrikanische Mütter und der Kampf um Zugehörigkeit in Berlin (Transcript, 2016).

Earlier books include Plundered Kitchens, Empty Wombs: Threatened Reproduction and Identity in the Cameroon Grassfields (Michigan, 1999) and the edited volume Reproduction, Collective Memory, and Generation in Africa (Edinburgh/International Africa Institute, 2005).

Time & Location

Jul 20, 2017 | 06:00 PM - 07:30 PM

Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology
Landoltweg 9-11,
14195 Berlin
Room 014