Migrant Families in Italy: Gendered Reconciliation Processes Between Social Reproduction and Paid Work
The paper focuses on the plans and practices of work/family reconciliation of immigrants (singles and couples) in transition to parenthood, born in Morocco, Peru and Romania and living in Piedmont, an Italian region in which the incidence of immigrants is above the national average. Analysis is made of longitudinal interviews conducted with 9 couples of migrants expecting their first child, and 20 semi-structured interviews with migrant parents with children aged 0 to 6. Information on parents of Italian origin is also drawn from examination of the literature and 64 longitudinal interviews conducted with 17 couples of middle-class Italian parents resident in the same region. Gendered reconciliation processes between social reproduction and paid work, and the gap between ideals and practices, depend on social resources, the institutional context, the migratory history, and the employment and legal status of the migrant parents. Exit by the mother from the labour market, in a context of increased work precarization for fathers, exposes these families to greater vulnerability.