University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Department of Geography - Seminars in Cultural and Historical Geography > I'm a Citizen of the World': Gender, Identity and the Politics of Scale among British Expatriates in China

I'm a Citizen of the World': Gender, Identity and the Politics of Scale among British Expatriates in China

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  • UserKatie Willis, Department of Geography, Royal Holloway, University of London
  • ClockWednesday 25 October 2006, 16:15-17:30
  • HouseRoom 101, Hardy Building.

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Recent literature on the mobility patterns of a so-called ‘global elite’ or ‘transnational capitalist class’ has focused on their ease of cross-border movement and the ability to operate in a range of national settings due to the increased homogenisation of ‘global business space’. This representation fails, however, to recognise the ways in which the practices of individuals are implicated in the construction of this global space.

This paper uses the example of British expatriates in China to examine these debates in relation to particular spaces and scales. While many ‘career expatriates’ argue that they no longer possess a particular ‘national’ identity, it is clear that their abilities to be ‘global citizens’ in terms of where they are able to live and work are a reflection of practices at a range of smaller scales. This paper will focus on the gender dimensions of these processes and will focus on the scales of the body and the household to examine how the ‘national’ space of China is experienced and negotiated by men and women. The paper is based on 120 interviews with Britons in China, the UK and Singapore.

This talk is part of the Department of Geography - Seminars in Cultural and Historical Geography series.

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