University Erlangen-Nuernberg, Institute of Sociology, Kochstr. 4 91054 Erlangen, Erlangen 91054, Germany (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Passage to Hope: Marriage, Migration, and the Need for a Cosmopolitan Turn in Family Research
Article first published online: 5 NOV 2010
Copyright 2010 by the National Council on Family Relations
Journal of Family Theory & Review
Volume 2, Issue 4, pages 401–414, December 2010
How to Cite
Beck, U. and Beck-Gernsheim, E. (2010), Passage to Hope: Marriage, Migration, and the Need for a Cosmopolitan Turn in Family Research. Journal of Family Theory & Review, 2: 401–414. doi: 10.1111/j.1756-2589.2010.00069.x
- Issue published online: 5 NOV 2010
- Article first published online: 5 NOV 2010
- cosmopolitan turn;
- methodological nationalism
When family research remains fixed to the container model of the nation-state, it becomes increasingly unable to understand and explain the situation of families in today's interconnected world. This is true in a twofold sense. On the one hand, the relationships and lifestyles of a significant segment of the population are excluded from view and purview. On the other hand, when universalism builds its concepts from the vantage point of the majority society and implicitly claims their universal validity, this kind of approach inevitably succumbs to misinterpretations and distortions. To demonstrate this, we take marriage migration as a case in point, outlining first its social context and then the way academic and public discourse treat this subject. By pointing out common blind spots and biased perceptions in this debate, we try to give evidence to our critique and lay the ground for a different approach: a “cosmopolitan turn” in research on the family.