Striving for Better Lives: Development of Economic Activities Among Newcomer Chinese Female Immigrants in Contemporary Japan

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 18:50
Oral Presentation
Jie ZHANG, Waseda University, China
This study explores the quests of immigrant women in transnational social spaces. Reflecting on immigrant women from China, it explains their engagement in developing their economic activities as they are resettling as migrants in contemporary Japanese society. As a significant immigrant group in Japan, Chinese women becoming the important members of labor force, their activities and social standing may affect their migration process and willingness to stay in Japan, hence influence the Japanese labor market. Therefore, this study aims to discuss how newcomer Chinese women striving better life qualities in contemporary Japanese society from the economic and social aspects. Focusing on the interrelation between gender, migration and labor market, this study further reflects the similarities in their circumstances highlighting the growing salience of women in the different sectors their ‘new’ social space. Whereas their experiences denote their vulnerabilities attributed to conditions of social distance as well as migrancy, this study underscore the active agency of women as a gendered subject – whether in the strive of higher life quality, or in the performance of their social roles as consumer, housewives and independent business women. By draws on life stories and independent interviews, this study explains how Chinese women developing their career and social standing from "special" ways, especially for those housewives. Their economic activities as migrants in morden Japanese society also reaffirms the significance of gender.