Returning to Freedom: The Transnational Economic and Social Linkages of the Burmese-Canadian Diaspora

Authors: Ei Phyu Smith*,
Topics: Political Geography, Gender, Immigration/Transnationalism
Keywords: Borders, Political Geography, Feminist Geography, Refugees, Camp, Thailand, Burma
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Cabinet Room, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


I will examine the transnational meanings of home by members of the Burmese Diaspora returning to work in the current political landscape in Myanmar. I will interrogate the role of civil society in a time of political transition through the study of how these migrants are engaging with a rapidly changing cultural milieu that is being shaped by the greater political freedom. This paper will explore how the process of reconnecting with Myanmar as their “homeland” is complicated by the myriad of ways that the Burmese diaspora remain tethered to Canada, the country that gave them greater rights and freedoms. This research will contribute to scholarship in political and cultural geography by studying how the economic and social practices of these Burmese-Canadian individuals refine meanings of citizenship, home and multiculturalism. their transboundary acts have implications for the economic links between Myanmar and Canada and can further deepen our understanding of lived experiences with multiculturalism in an increasingly globalized society.

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