This introduction chapter gives an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. In San Francisco, post-1991 migrants from Ukraine spoke about how "lucky" they were to come to the United States and presented their migration as a "voluntary" exodus. On the Shoulders of Grandmothers draws on 160 interviews and two years of ethnographic research conducted with migrant Ukrainian domestic workers in Italy, California, and their children in Ukraine as well as community leaders. First, the book illustrates that dynamics within the sending country stratify migrants in surprising ways, because not all migrations are treated equally by the sending state. Second it shines a light on the analytical terrain of transnationalism to show how migrants build nation-states from the outside in. Finally, by applying the methods of gendered global ethnography, On the Shoulders of Grandmothers allows us to see how globalization is produced from the bottom up.