chapter  3
20 Pages

Market bound: relocation and disjunction in Northwest

WithLaos CHRIS LYTTLETON

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Migration is by definition unsettling. People typically migrate in the hope of attaining something better, whether short or long term. This goal can require deliberate sacrifice of citizenship and social familiarity. Shortfalls in material and social entailments necessary for health often become apparent when people move to seek work. Transnational labour markets that promote large-scale movement are constituted by discursive formations that cut across political, cultural and economic realms. The labour migrant experience is a direct product of state controls that ‘treat immigrant populations as the object of discursive elaboration, normalization and discipline and transform them into governable subjects as well as [labouring] ones’ (Nonini 2002: 15). This transformation is not without costs felt intimately by these ‘docile’ bodies whose negotiable health can become the bargaining chip to attain access to labour markets.