@article{Portes1999, author="Alejandro Portes and Luis E. Guarnizo and Patricia Landolt", title="The Study of Transnationalism: Pitfalls and Promise of an Emergent Research Field", year="1999", journal="Ethnic and Racial Studies", volume="22-2", number="Mar.", pages="217-237", annote="

Question(s) addressed by the author and working arguments

The event in question pertain to the creation of a transnational community linking immigrant groups in the advanced countries with their respective sending nations and hometowns. Transnational entrepreneurs are depicted as a new and still exceptional breed, whereas in others all immigrants are said to be participants in the transnational communities.

In the case of transnationalism, it is not enough to invoke anecdotes of some immigrants investing in business back home or some governments giving their expatriates the right to vote in national elections to justify a new field of study. To establish the phenomenon, at least three conditions are necessary: (1) significant proportion of persons in the relevant universe. (2) the activities of interest are not fleeting or exceptional, but posses certain stability and resilience over time. (3) the content of these activities is not captured by some pre-existing concept, making the invention of a new term redundant. The ready availability of air transport, long-distance telephone, facsimile communication, and electronic mail provides the technological basis for the emergence of transnationalism on a mass scale.

Two forms of transnationalism: (1) theoretical, because it represents a distinct form of immigrant adaptation to those described in the past literature, and (2) Practical, because it offers an option to ordinary people not present in the past, either in their own countries or in those to which they migrate.

Conceptual references to transnational – transnationalism

Contemporary transnationalism corresponds to a different period in the evolution of the world economy and to a different set of responses and strategies by people in a condition of disadvantage to its dominant logic.

Conclusions or Final Remarks

Transnational migration studies form a highly fragmented, emergent field which still lacks both a well-defined theoretical framework and analytical rigour.

", keyword0="Conceptions", keyword1="Political Transnationalism", keyword2="Research", keyword3="Research Field", keyword4="Transnationalism", type="journal" }