chapter  8
14 Pages

Domestic Work and Transnational Care Chains in Spain

ByAngeles Escriva, Emmeline Skinner

Domestic labour markets are currently undergoing rapid transformations, although it could also be said that little has changed in either the gender, regional or international (and ethnic) divisions of labour. In the last quarter of the twentieth century in Spain there was a process of substitution of Spanish internal migrants with foreign women as domestic workers in private households. First came Filipinos and Portuguese, later Polish, Moroccans, Dominicans, Peruvians and Colombians, and most recently Ecuadorians, Bulgarians, Romanians, Bolivians and Paraguayans, among others. They all share the common experience of entering the Spanish domestic labour market as live-in maids, while simultaneously having to cope with their own family obligations as spouses, daughters and mothers, whether their dependants are near or far away.